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Unemployment rate steady at years end
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The unemployment rate in Stanislaus County stayed steady for the month of December, while continuing to fall below the year-ago estimate, the Employment Development Department reported Friday.

Stanislaus County’s unemployment rate for December was at 12.2 percent, remaining unchanged from November’s revised rate of 12.2 percent. The December rate fell below the year-ago estimate of 14.7 percent, the EDD reported.

The estimated number of unemployed people in Stanislaus County for December was at 28,400.

Several sectors recorded declines in employment in December, with the largest coming from the farming sector, which had an estimated drop of 1,300 positions for the month.

Manufacturing, construction, government and professional and business services also all recorded slight drops in employment for the month, according to the EDD.

The retail sector saw an increase in hiring for the month, with general merchandise stores leading the way at 13.5 percent in the county, the EDD reported. However, a majority of those were temporary positions for the holidays.

Merced County recorded an increase in the unemployment rate in December, going from 13.6 percent in November to 14.2 percent in December. San Joaquin County’s rate dropped just slightly from 12.2 percent to 12.1 percent in December.

California had an unemployment rate of 7.9 percent in December and the nation recorded a rate of 6.5 percent for the same time period.

Turlock’s unemployment rate stayed the same at 9.2 percent. Denair’s also remained unchanged at 6.6 percent. Hughson saw a slight increase from 15.9 percent to 16 percent, as did Keyes, which saw an increase from 21.6 percent in November to 21.7 percent in December. Ceres saw a slight bump from 15.2 percent to 15.3 percent.