Jobless rate down for county, state |

Jobless rate down for county, state

Nevada County’s unemployment rate declined in February after a big jump the month before.

Unemployment declined 0.4 percent, from 5.2 percent in January to 4.8 percent in February, according to figures released Friday by the state Employment Development Department. Nevada County ranked 14th lowest for unemployment in the state.

The number of unemployed people dropped from 2,380 to 2,190 in February.

California unemployment also took a 0.4 percent drop, from 6.8 percent to 6.4 percent. Unemployment in the United States fell from 6.3 percent to 6.1 percent. The preliminary figures are not adjusted for seasonal effects.

The unemployment rate rose from 4.1 percent in December to 5.2 percent in January.

The number of jobs in Nevada County dropped by 100 during the two months, from 28,130 to 28,030, a 0.4 percent decrease. The total job figure was virtually unchanged from February 2001, when the jobs numbered 27,990. The year period saw a 0.1 percent increase in the number of jobs.

Most of the month-over job loss could be attributed to seasonal layoffs in construction and retail trade, said Mary Mahoney, EDD labor market consultant. Rain and snow hampered construction in February, while retail typically experiences a post-holiday slowdown.

Construction jobs fell 0.7 percent, or 20 jobs. Retail trade was down 1.1 percent, or 70 jobs.

Other sectors with fewer jobs over the two-month period were farming, industrial machinery and health services.

Local government, electronic equipment and transportation sectors added jobs.

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