With gains throughout most sectors of the regional economy last month, Riverside County’s unemployment rate dropped below 7%, according to figures released Friday by the California Employment Development Department.

The jobless rate in September, based on preliminary EDD estimates, was 6.6%, compared to 7.6% in August.

The September rate was exactly 4 percentage points lower than the year-ago level, when countywide unemployment stood at 10.6%, amid the public health lockdowns.

About 73,400 residents were recorded as out of work last month, and 1,041,500 were employed, according to EDD.

Coachella had the highest unemployment rate countywide in September at 14.4%, followed by Mecca at 10.4%, Desert Hot Springs and Winchester each at 9.8%, East Hemet at 9.5% and Highgrove at 9.3%

The combined unemployment rate for Riverside and San Bernardino counties in September was also 6.6%, down from 7.6% in August, according to figures.

Bi-county data indicated payrolls expanded by the widest margin in trade, transportation and utilities, which netted an increase of 5,200 positions, primarily in warehousing.

The agricultural, manufacturing, professional business services and public sectors altogether added another 3,200 jobs, while miscellaneous unclassified industries posted a gain of 1,400.

The information technology sector was unchanged.

Payrolls in the construction, financial services, health services and hospitality sectors declined by an estimated total 2,200 jobs, data showed.

EDD said the statewide non-seasonally-adjusted unemployment rate last month was 6.4%.

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