STRONG GAINS FOR CALIFORNIA JOB GROWTH
Unemployment Rate Remains Steady
November 16, 2018—LOS ANGELES, CALIFORNIA—Nonfarm job growth in California was robust in October, with the state adding 36,400 positions in the latest numbers from the Economic Development Department (EDD), according to an analysis released jointly by Beacon Economics and the UC Riverside School of Business Center for Economic Forecasting and Development. This is well above the 22,000 average monthly gain during the first nine months of 2018 and helps to keep year-over-year gains in the state (1.8%) above national growth levels (1.7%).
California’s unemployment rate remained steady at 4.1% in October, maintaining its historic low. And despite a strong month for labor force growth (56,200), it continues to be a lackluster year with the state’s workforce growing by just 0.2% from October 2017 to October 2018.
“California remains on track for a good year, especially if you look at the yearly changes,” said Robert Kleinhenz Executive Director of Research at Beacon Economics and the UCR Center for Forecasting. “However, the impact of the tragic November fires on the state and local employment picture will likely show up in subsequent months, and may dampen job growth temporarily in parts of the state.“
- The Administrative Support sector added the most jobs last month, increasing payrolls by 9,800 positions. The strong month helped push year-over-year gains for the sector to 4.2%, well above the overall statewide gain of 1.8%.
- The Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services (+8,900) and the Manufacturing (+6,600) sectors also added significant numbers of jobs this month. The robust growth helped push year-over-year gains in Professional Services to a sizeable 4.2% and helped keep year-over-year gains in Manufacturing at a modest 0.3%.
- Other sectors adding significantly to their payrolls in October were Information (+5,600), Construction (+3,000), and Logistics (+2,300).
- While the majority of the states’ industries experienced growth, a handful of sectors shed positions in October. The largest declines were in Retail Trade, which lost 3,900 positions last month. This was followed by Educational Services (-2,600), Other Services (-1,000), and Real Estate (-800).
- Regionally, growth was somewhat mixed, with the sum of the state’s MSAs adding a modest 14,700 jobs in October. In Southern California, the Los Angeles (MD) (+6,900) added the most positions followed by San Diego (+1,800) and Orange County (+1,000), while the Inland Empire (-300) shed jobs. From a year-over-year perspective, the Inland Empire (+2.7%) is leading in job growth, followed by San Diego (+1.8%), Ventura (+1.8%), Los Angeles (+1.3%), and Orange County (+0.8%).
- In the San Francisco Bay Area, growth was modest, with San Jose leading the way (+600) followed by Santa Rosa (+500). San Rafael (MD) (-1,200), and San Francisco (MD) (-1,000) both shed positions last month. From a year-over-year perspective, San Jose (+3.2%) is in first place, followed closely by Santa Rosa (+3.1%); San Francisco (MD) (+1.8%) and the East Bay (1.7%) grew more modestly.
- In the Central Valley, Sacramento (+2,700) saw the most growth, followed by Fresno (+1,200) Stockton (+900), and Bakersfield +(600). From a year-over-year perspective, growth in Merced (+3.8%), Stockton (+3.1%), Fresno (+2.6%), Chico (+2.1%), and Madera (+2.1%) all outpaced the statewide average.
- Along the Central Coast, San Luis Obispo led the pack (+500) followed by Santa Cruz (+400) and Santa Barbara (+400). From a year-over-year perspective, Santa Cruz (+1.8%), Salinas (1.4%), and San Luis Obispo (+1.2%) have all added jobs at a steady pace.
Beacon Economics is an independent economic research and consulting firm based in Los Angeles. The UCR School of Business Center for Economic Forecasting and Development is the first world class university forecasting center in the Inland Empire. This analysis was authored by Christopher Thornberg, Robert Kleinhenz, and Brian Vanderplas. Learn more at www.beaconecon.com and www.ucreconomicforecast.org.