California’s job market is experiencing a sustained increase in employment as the state continues to emerge from the Great Recession. However, even with unemployment falling, California’s job market recovery has not reached large segments of California’s workers. After more than three years of job growth, the pace of the recovery has been on par with that of previous recoveries in the state, which is bad news for California’s workers given the historic severity of job losses during the Great Recession. A majority of California counties still have unemployment rates in the double digits, and long-term unemployment remains a serious concern: More than two in five unemployed Californians have been searching for work for at least six months. And for those who do have work, this recovery has not yet produced the mix of jobs that would lead to broad-based economic growth. California’s recovery has disproportionately relied on low-wage service industries for job growth, and jobs generally have not returned in occupations that tend to pay wages in the middle of the earnings distribution. These weaknesses in the current recovery mean that challenges facing California even before the recession began, such as wage stagnation and widening inequality, continue today.
Employers added a softer-than-expected 169,000 jobs in August and the unemployment rate dipped slightly to 7.3 percent, the government said Friday in a status-quo jobs report that showed the workforce participation rate at its lowest level in 35 years.
The disappointing jobs report released Friday leaves Federal Reserve officials without a clear-cut signal of an economy on the mend, creating a dilemma for the central bank as it contemplates pulling back on a landmark bond-buying program designed to stoke growth.
. . . But beneath such positive numbers lay evidence of a job market stuck in second gear. The government revised down its estimate for June and July hiring by a combined 74,000 jobs, and a disproportionate share of the jobs that are being added are in low-paying sectors such as restaurants and retail. At the recent pace of hiring, the economy won’t get back to prerecession levels of employment, adjusting for population growth, for more than eight years.
According to Labour Department figures released on Friday, the number of people with jobs fell by 112,000 in August. The data do not go into detail about why specific industries suffered, but it is thought that a temporary hiatus in the pornography industry had a significant impact on the figures. The adult film business was brought to a standstill for 12 days in August, after one of its actors was found to have HIV. The jobs data do not drill down into such specific industries, but the wider movie business lost 22,000 paid jobs – around 6pc of its total workforce.
California Economy Improves, but Rebound Leads to More Cuts in Federal Extension Benefits for the Unemployed
SACRAMENTO – As California’s economy continues to rebound from the recession, the California Employment Development Department (EDD) is warning long-term unemployed individuals that they may no longer be eligible for the last tier in federal unemployment extension benefits. That’s because California’s unemployment rate is on track to dip below a three-month average of 9% – the minimum level required by federal guidelines in order to provide the final ten weeks of additional benefits associated with a Tier 4 federal extension.
The unemployment rate in Sacramento and California registered a significant drop in May for the second consecutive month, but analysts cautioned that the steadily improving numbers conceal a large number of people who are working in low-wage jobs or who are no longer firmly attached to the workforce.
The number of people filing new jobless claims across the country dropped by 11,000 to 346,000, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. California saw the largest increase in new claims.
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