Job Fair example - Photo courtesy of Cytonn Photography on Unsplash

With expansion in most sectors of the regional economy, Riverside County’s unemployment rate dropped below 4% last month, according to figures released Friday by the California Employment Development Department.

The jobless rate in April, based on preliminary EDD estimates, was 3.8%, compared to 4.3% in March.

According to figures, the April rate was over four percentage points lower than the year-ago level when countywide unemployment stood at 8.1%, as the statewide coronavirus public health lockdowns were gradually eased.

About 43,300 county residents were recorded as out of work in April, and 1,108,000 were employed, according to the EDD.

Coachella had the highest unemployment rate countywide last month at 8.3%, followed by Cherry Valley at 7%, Mecca at 6.1%, Hemet at 5.9% and Rancho Mirage at 5.7%.

The combined unemployment rate for Riverside and San Bernardino counties in April was also 3.8%, and also down from 4.3% in March.

Bi-county data indicated that payrolls expanded by the widest margins in the hospitality and professional business services sectors, which added a combined 6,600 jobs in April.

Additional gains were documented in the agricultural, construction, financial services, health services, government and manufacturing sectors, which altogether swelled by 6,400 positions in April, according to the EDD.

The agency said the information technology and mining sectors, as well as miscellaneous unclassified industries, were unchanged.

Payrolls contracted by a total 2,800 jobs in trade, transportation and utilities — the second consecutive month of losses in that sector, according to figures.

The statewide non-seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate in April was, like the Inland Empire, 3.8%.

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