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Local unemployment rates rebound in April

After three consecutive months of rising unemployment rates in Stanislaus and Merced counties, the statistics provided by the State of California’s Employment Development Department finally started to improve during the month of April.

Last month, Stanislaus County’s unemployment rate dropped to 6.2% from a 7% rate in March. Similarly, the unemployment rate in Merced County fell from 11.3% to 9.7% in the month’s span. This comes as the state unemployment rate for April was reported as 4.3% and the nationwide rate came in at 3.1%, both 5% lower than in March.

In Stanislaus County, leading the charge was the Leisure and Hospitality industry, which grew by 300 jobs. Behind it were the Construction and Retail sectors, which gained 200 jobs each in April. Meanwhile, county government jobs represented the biggest single industry losses at 100.

Over in Merced County, the largest growing industry by a long mile was Farming, as there were 1,300 jobs added. Retail also came in as the second biggest grower with 100 jobs added. Like in Stanislaus County, Merced County’s biggest loser in workers was the county government.

In terms of specific cities, Turlock’s unemployment rate came in as 4.2% representing 1,400 unemployed individuals. Denair posted a similar number of 1,500 people without work, translating to a 7% rate for the small town. In Hilmar, the town had 100 folks without work for a 5.3% unemployment rate. Keyes also had 100 unemployed for a 4.2% rate. Meanwhile Hughson had an 8.8% unemployment rate representing 300 people without work.

Still in high demand for workers in both counties is the health care and social assistance sector. In Stanislas County, it is the most in-demand industry with 2,499 total openings. Of that number, the position in most need are registered nurses, as there are currently 674 online job ads. In Merced County, the industry is the second-most in demand with 474 openings.

Coming in right behind the health care and social assistance sector in Stanislaus County is the retail industry with 1,051 total openings. For Merced County, the most in-demand jobs are in the private education sector, as there are 507 jobs available.