Unemployment rate skyrockets in March due to coronavirus crisis | Business


The unemployment rate skyrocketed last month and is expected to worsen eventually due to the coronavirus crisis.

In California, the unemployment rate fell from 3.9% in February to 5.3% in March, according to data released April 17 by the California Employment Development Department (EDD).

In San Bernardino County, the unemployment rate jumped to 4.9 percent, and in Riverside County, it was 5.3 percent.

The unemployment figures reflect data from the March 12 survey week and partially predate the current and worsening economic impact created by COVID-19. Data for the week of the survey, including April 12, is expected to be released on May 22, EDD said.

Employers lost 99,500 off-farm jobs in California in March, ending a record 120-month expansion that outpaced the long expansion of the 1960s. In the recent expansion, California gained 3,417,700 jobs, which which represents 15% of the 22,789,000 jobs in the country during the same period.

The job losses total in March was the fourth largest on record in the state and was due to declines in six of California’s 11 industrial sectors, EDD said. The recreation and hospitality sector (-67,200) posted the largest job loss, largely due to declines in full-service restaurants as well as food services and drinking places. The “other services” (-15,500) and construction (-11,600) categories also suffered significant losses.

The large gain in government jobs (5,200) was mainly due to an increase in employment in local government. Federal government employment also contributed to above-normal increases, spurred by job growth for the U.S. Census.


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