With gains across almost all sectors of the regional economy, Riverside County’s jobless rate dropped last month, according to figures released Friday by the California Employment Development Department.
The unemployment rate in May, based on preliminary estimates, was 7.2%, compared to 7.5% in April, the EDD said.
The May rate was nearly nine percentage points lower than the year-ago level, when countywide unemployment stood at 15.7% amid the public health lockdowns.
About 79,500 residents were out of work last month, and 1,027,200 were employed, according to the EDD.
Coachella had the highest unemployment rate countywide in May at 12.4%, followed by Mecca at 11.3%, Winchester at 10.6%, Hemet at 10.4% and Desert Hot Springs at 10.3%.
The combined unemployment rate for Riverside and San Bernardino counties in May was also 7.2%, down from 7.5% in April, according to the EDD.
Bi-county data indicated that, as in March and April, payrolls expanded by the widest margin in the hospitality sector, which added 3,300 positions last month, with the public sector posting the next-highest amount — 1,800.
Additional gains were recorded in the agricultural, construction, financial services, health services, information technology, manufacturing and warehousing sectors, which altogether added 5,800 jobs.
Another 600 jobs were created in miscellaneous unclassified industries, according to figures.
Only the professional business services sector trimmed payrolls, by 500 positions, data showed.
The statewide non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in May was 7.5%.