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SPECIAL COVERAGE: Living With Wildfires: San Diego Firestorm 10 Years Later

Unemployment In San Diego Remains A Concern As Steady Job Growth Elusive

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Roughly 5,000 fewer California filed new claims for unemployment last week compared to the week before, but California and San Diego are still waiting to see a steady decline in unemployment.

— Roughly 5,000 fewer Californians filed new claims for unemployment last week compared to the week before. But, California and San Diego are still waiting to see a steady decline in unemployment.

Watching the number of new unemployment claims rise and fall each week could make you feel a little seasick.

The job market in San Diego hasn’t been much better. The county’s unemployment rate started to drop in the spring, but it rose in June and July and is now almost 11 percent.

Marney Cox is SANDAG’s chief economist. He said slow but steady local job growth at the beginning of the year could have contributed to higher unemployment now.

“As your economy begins to recover more people come back into the labor force who got discouraged. So, some of the blip in the unemployment rate was due to people thinking, ‘Ah, the recession looks like it’s ending, now may be a good time for me to go out and look for a job again,'” he said.

July was also the first month this year that the county saw significant job losses. There were 13,000 fewer jobs in the county in July than in June. Cox said it is an unusual time of year to see the losses.

“Some of our typically strong areas, like educational services, things like that, which were almost throughout the recovery period had shown strength actually declined," he said. "The bottom line here is that the economy is not as strong as people were anticipating.”

The number of jobs in the county has increased by about 1 percent since January.

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