California unemployment rate decreases in March

In data released by the State of California Employment Development Department today, unemployment numbers for March dropped by 0.5 percent over March of 2016.

Employment increased to 19,300 jobs in March throughout the state, according to the data, bringing the total jobs in nonfarm industries to 16,694,000.

Six sectors saw increased employment, and five saw declines.

The sectors seeing increases were:

  • Construction (18,900)
  • Government (6,300)
  • Leisure and Hospitality (4,700)
  • Educational and Health Services (4,300)
  • Manufacturing (1,700)
  • Other Services (1,300)

Sectors seeing job loss were:

  • Information (9,400)
  • Trade, Transportation and Utilities (4,200)
  • Financial Activities (2,900)
  • Professional and Business Services (1,300)
  • Mining and Lodging (100)

San Mateo County had the lowest unemployment rate in the state at 2.7 percent. The highest was in Colusa County at 21.8 percent.

In March, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate statewide was 4.9 percent, down 0.1 percent from February, and down 0.7 percent over March of 2016, according to the data.

Nationwide, unemployment rates were lower in 17 states and holding steady in 33 states and the District of Columbia, as reported by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics today. Unemployment decreased across the country by 0.2 percent to 4.5 from February to March, and 0.5 percent lower than March of 2016.

According to the nationwide data, Colorado had the lowest unemployment rate last month at 2.6 percent. New Mexico had the highest rate of 6.7 percent.

The largest job gains over the past year in the country occurred in California (over 346,400), Texas (over 249,000) and Florida (over 246,100).