Friday, March 03, 2006

Sacramento Region adds most jobs since 2001

Sacramento Business Journal - March 3, 2006

Region adds most jobs since 2001

Sacramento Business Journal - 2:31 PM PST Friday

Job growth in construction and professional services helped lower January's unemployment rate to 4.8 percent in the Sacramento region, the state reported Friday.

The four-county area added 28,000 jobs in January from the same month last year, the largest annual increase since 2001. The region's jobless rate, before adjustments for seasonal variation, is up from 4.1 percent in December but down from 5.4 percent in January 2005, the Employment Development Department said.

Following typical patterns, Placer County had the lowest jobless rate at 4.1 percent in January, while Yolo County had the highest at 6.2 percent. The region -- El Dorado, Placer, Sacramento and Yolo counties -- enjoyed job growth in most industries during the past year.

The professional and business services category, which includes the technology sector, added 6,100 jobs in 12 months; the next biggest gainer was in government jobs, with 4,500 added. The hospitality industry added 3,900 jobs, while construction increased by 3,700 -- the 12th consecutive year of growth for the industry. Manufacturing, which had been hard hit in recent years, created 2,300 jobs over the past year, according to the state.

The information industry endured the largest annual job losses at 800 positions, or 5.4 percent, over the past year in the Sacramento area.

State rate also down
Statewide, the jobless rate dropped to a seasonally adjusted 4.9 percent in January, the lowest level since March 2001, according to the EDD report. The figure compares to 5.1 percent in December and 5.8 percent in January 2005.

The state added 18,300 nonfarm jobs in January, based on the state's survey of employers. Year over year, the state added 289,200 jobs, a gain of about 2 percent.

Construction was the best performer, adding about 76,300 jobs -- or 8.8 percent -- over the past year. Professional and business service industries gained 75,500 jobs in the year-to-year comparison, the second-largest increase in the state.

The manufacturing industry endured the largest job loss at 17,000, or 1.1 percent of its statewide work force.

According to a separate state survey of households, almost 16.86 million people had jobs in January, 295,000 more than a year ago. The state has about 875,000 people unemployed.

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