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Unemployment rate sees improvements
Merced County total employment grew 3.99%, the fastest among the San Joaquin Valley’s eight counties in 2021. Stanislaus County total employment grew the second fastest at 3.56%.

The unemployment rate in Stanislaus County recorded a modest decline in October, however, all but two sectors remain far below the employment levels from last year, according to the latest numbers from the Employment Development Department.

Stanislaus County had an October unemployment rate of 9.1%, down from a revised rate of 10.1% in September. The rate is above the year-ago estimate of 5.1%.

Most sectors in Stanislaus County were able to add jobs in October, except for a few. Manufacturing recorded the largest loss for the month, with an estimated decline of 1,300 jobs, according to the EDD. The losses were largely from food manufacturing positions, which typically decline as the year comes to a close and harvesting ends.

The Farming sector posted a drop of approximately 200 jobs and Government jobs were down by an estimated 400 positions, the EDD reported.

Trade, Transportation and Utilities posted the biggest job gains in Stanislaus County for October, with about 700 jobs added. Leisure and Hospitality added approximately 500 positions and Professional and Business Services added about 400 jobs.

For the year, the Leisure and Hospitality sector has taken the biggest hit from the pandemic. The sector is down by an estimated 4,100 jobs when compared to the same time frame last year. The Trade, Transportation and Utilities sector follows, with an approximate loss of 3,700 positions for the year-over.

The only sectors in Stanislaus County that have not posted losses for the year-over are Financial Activities and Manufacturing. Both sectors are flat for the year-over, according to the EDD.

San Joaquin County had an unemployment rate of 10% in October and Merced County came in at 9.3% for the month. California's unemployment rate in October was at 9% and the nation's was at 6.6% for the same time frame.

Employers in California added an estimated 145,500 jobs in October. It is the third-highest single-month job gain in the current data series that dates back to 1990, according to the EDD.

California has regained nearly 44 percent of the 2,615,800 nonfarm jobs that were lost due to the COVID-19 pandemic in March and April. However, that number does not reflect the recent shutdown orders for 41 California counties that are experiencing widespread COVID-19 transmission.

October marks the first month since March 2020 that California’s unemployment rate was below 10 percent and the fifth straight month it fell below the all-time unemployment rate high of 16.4 percent set in April and May of this year.

Unemployment benefits for workers in California who have lost jobs or had their hours reduced due to the COVID-19 pandemic now total $110 billion stemming from 16.4 million claims processed since March, the EDD reported.