With solid growth in several sectors of the regional economy, Riverside County’s unemployment rate dropped back below 4% last month, state officials reported Friday.
The jobless rate in September, based on preliminary estimates, was 3.8%, compared to 4.7% in August, according to the California Employment Development Department.
The rate was half of a percentage point lower than the year-ago level, when countywide unemployment stood at 4.3%, figures showed.
Roughly 42,000 residents were out of work in September, and 1,061,400 were employed, according to the EDD.
Coachella had the highest unemployment rate countywide at 11.3%, followed by the unincorporated community of Cabazon at 8.5% and the unincorporated community of Highgrove at 6.5%.
The combined unemployment rate for Riverside and San Bernardino counties in September was 3.6%, down from 4.4% in August, officials said.
Bi-county data indicated payrolls expanded by the widest margin in the government services sector, primarily education, as teachers and support personnel from grade schools got back on the job after summer hiatus. The sector added an estimated 5,600 positions last month.
Additional gains were recorded in the retail trade, professional business services, health services and agriculture sectors, which altogether expanded by 7,600 jobs, according to the EDD.
The mining sector was unchanged.
Payrolls contracted in the hospitality, financial services, information technology, manufacturing and construction sectors, which shed an aggregate 3,400 positions, according to data. Miscellaneous unclassified industries also shrank by 900 jobs, figures showed.
The EDD said that the state’s jobless rate in September was 3.5%.
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