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San Diego County’s Unemployment Rate Drops

Photo caption: A sign that reads "now hiring" is displayed on top of a register.

Photo credit: Michael Rosenstein / Flickr

A sign that reads "now hiring" is displayed on top of a register.

San Diego County Unemployment Rate Hits A Near 7-Year Low

GUESTS:

Marney Cox, chief economist, San Diego Association of Governments

Erik Bruvold, president, National University System Institute for Policy Research

Transcript

The unemployment rate last month in San Diego County was 5.3 percent, down from 5.8 percent in January and well below the 7.1 percent recorded in February of last year, the state Employment Development Department announced Friday.

Those figures compare to a statewide unemployment rate in February that was 6.8 percent, and a 5.8 percent nationwide rate for the same time period. Neither figure is seasonally adjusted.

In San Diego County, 2,600 new local and state government sector positions were added last month, as were 1,400 leisure and hospitality jobs, 1,200 in educational and health services and another 900 jobs in the financial services industry, according to the department. The professional and business services, information and manufacturing sectors also saw gains.

The professional and business services, information and manufacturing sectors also saw gains.

"The San Diego region continues to outpace the state and the nation in job growth and unemployment," said Mike Combs, research director at the San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation. "Even better, our growth is being driven by our traded sectors, such as ship building, scientific R&D and tourism."

The department reported that around 400 construction jobs were lost last month. About 100 trade, transportation and utilities positions were also eliminated.

Over the past year, 39,700 nonfarm jobs were added in the county. Of that, 8,800 jobs were filled in the professional and business services sector, along with 8,200 in leisure and hospitality, 6,900 in education and health services and 4,000 in government, the agency said.

"The San Diego regional economy continues to hum along at a steady pace," said Phil Blair, CEO of the Manpower employment agency. "The unemployment rate is the lowest it has been in nearly seven years while we continue to add good jobs in our innovation and building industries each year. There are plenty of reasons to remain optimistic about 2015."

About 83,000 San Diego County residents were unemployed in February out of a civilian workforce of more than 1.55 million, down 7.6 percent from January's revised unemployment figure of 89,800, according to the department. Last month's unemployment numbers were also 24.3 percent lower than during the same time period in 2014.

San Diego County's Unemployment Rate Drops

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