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Economy

Unemployment Numbers Dip In San Diego

The unemployment rate in San Diego County was 5.8 percent last month, 0.1 percent lower than the month before and down from the 7.4 percent recorded at the same time last year, the state Employment Development Department reported today.

The October figure ties with that of May for the lowest unemployment rate in the region since June 2008, according to department's data.

By comparison, the agency reported that the statewide unemployment rate in October was 7 percent, and the nationwide mark was 5.5 percent.

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"We continue to find ourselves in a much better position than the year before, as our labor force and employment base continue to grow," said Phil Blair, president and CEO of the employment firm Manpower San Diego. "Job seekers are not only finding opportunities, but in industries that pay well."

Michael Combs, research manager at San Diego Regional Economic Development Corp., said the improved jobs picture is above average and driven by core industries, "which is clearly something to remain optimistic about."

The sectors with the largest job increases over the past month were local education, adding 4,100 positions; educational and health services, 3,500 jobs; and state education, 2,500. The gains were partially offset by the loss of 1,900 hospitality positions.

Over the past year, the largest gainers were for professional, scientific and technical services, 6,300 jobs; health care and social assistance, 5,500; construction, 4,600; and wholesale trade, 3,100.

The Employment Development Department said 94,200 San Diegans were unemployed last month out of a civilian labor force of more than 1.6 million, which is about 22,000 fewer jobless people than the same time in 2013.

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