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San Diego County unemployment rate drops to 4.2% in December

A "now hiring" sign hangs in the window of Filipe's Pizza in Escondido, Calif. Aug. 9, 2021.
Alexander Nguyen
A "now hiring" sign hangs in the window of Filipe's Pizza in Escondido, Calif. Aug. 9, 2021.

San Diego County's unemployment rate decreased to 4.2% in December, down from a revised 4.6% in November and below the year-ago estimate of 8%, according to figures released today by the state Employment Development Department.

This compares with an unadjusted unemployment rate of 5% for California — which decreased from 5.4% in November — and 3.7% for the nation - - down from November's 3.9% — during the same period.

Between November and December, nonfarm employment decreased by 1,200, from 1,458,300 to 1,457,100 according to EDD figures. Agricultural employment contracted by 800, from 9,200 to 8,400.


Construction had the largest month-over-month decline with a loss of 2,400 jobs. Seven other industries reported a loss, including educational and health services — down 2,100 — leisure and hospitality down 1,300, government down 800, financial activities down 600, manufacturing down 500, other services down 400 and mining and logging down 100.

Professional and business services posted the most significant month- over payroll increase with 4,100 jobs added. Additionally, trade, transportation, and utilities increased by 2,500 jobs and information recorded an employment gain of 400.

In year-over-year numbers, nonfarm employment increased by 67,600 jobs, a gain of 4.9%.

The largest gainer was leisure and hospitality, with 37,600 jobs added to payrolls between December 2020 and December 2021. Of those, 32,000 were in accommodation and food services.

Professional and business services gained 13,500 over the year, along with 10,800 in other services, 5,100 in government, 2,100 in educational and health services, 1,700 in trade, transportation, and utilities and 1,400 in information.


Employment remained unchanged in mining and logging.

Year-over-year employment losses occurred in financial activities — down 3,000 — and construction — down 1,600.