05/09/2021

Reports » Job Reports

April 2016

Highlights for policy makers:

Unemployment Rate Eases to 5.3%; Total Employment Rises 32,400

The Labor Force data for April 2016 (seasonally adjusted; California preliminary) is shown below, along with the change from the prior month:

Seasonally Adjusted California US
Apr 2016 Change from Mar 2016 Apr 2016 Change from Mar 2016
Unemployment Rate 5.3 -0.1 5.0 0.0
Labor Force 19,084,200 0.1% 158,924,000 -0.2%
Participation Rate 62.0 0.0 62.8 -0.2
Employment 18,070,900 0.2% 151,004,000 -0.2%
Unemployment 1,013,400 -0.7% 7,920,000 -0.6%
Source: California Employment Development Department; US Bureau of Labor Statistics

The related not seasonally adjusted numbers (California preliminary), with the change from April 2015:

Not Seasonally Adjusted California US
Apr 2016 Change from Apr 2015 Apr 2016 Change from Apr 2015
Unemployment Rate 5.2 -1.0 4.7 -0.4
Labor Force 19,015,100 0.4% 158,488,000 1.2%
Participation Rate 61.8 -0.4 62.7 0.1
Employment 18,027,700 1.4% 151,075,000 1.7%
Unemployment 987,400 -15.3% 7,413,000 -6.9%
Source: California Employment Development Department; US Bureau of Labor Statistics

California Employment Development Department’s (EDD) latest release shows on a seasonally adjusted basis, total employment grew by 32,400 from March, while the number of unemployed declined slightly by 7,400. California’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate continued to decline from 5.4% in March to 5.3% in April. The unadjusted rate decreased from 6.2% in April 2015 to 5.2% in April 2016.

Total US employment saw a seasonally adjusted drop of 316,000, while the number of unemployed decreased by 46,000. The US unemployment rate held at 5.0%.

State Employment Growth Rankings

Change in Employment, April 2015 – April 2016
Rank Number of Employed Percentage Change Population Adjusted
(employment growth per 1,000 civilian
noninstitutional population)
1 CA 355,079 OR 6.0% OR 34.5
2 TX 255,615 TN 4.7% DE 27.2
3 FL 252,883 DE 4.6% TN 26.3
4 MI 170,330 AR 4.5% AR 24.5
5 NY 170,280 AZ 4.3% AZ 23.9
6 NC 141,785 MI 3.8% CO 21.8
7 TN 135,771 SC 3.4% MI 21.7
8 AZ 125,555 CO 3.4% DC 21.6
9 GA 123,374 DC 3.3% SC 19.0
10 IL 116,552 MS 3.2% IN 18.5
11 OR 110,712 NC 3.2% NC 18.2
12 NJ 101,797 IN 3.1% MO 18.0
13 PA 100,715 MO 2.9% HI 16.9
14 OH 97,570 HI 2.8% MS 16.6
15 IN 94,456 FL 2.8% GA 15.9
16 CO 91,957 GA 2.8% FL 15.6
17 WA 86,328 WA 2.6% WA 15.4
18 MO 85,362 NJ 2.4% NJ 14.4
19 SC 72,447 ID 2.3% UT 14.2
20 WI 61,183 UT 2.2% ID 14.0
21 MN 57,786 WI 2.1% MN 13.5
22 AR 56,173 NV 2.1% WI 13.4
23 MD 53,266 TX 2.1% TX 12.5
24 MA 40,419 CA 2.0% NV 12.2
25 MS 37,915 MN 2.0% CA 11.7
26 AL 35,935 IL 1.9% IL 11.6
  US 2,495,000 US 1.7% US 9.9
Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics, Seasonally Adjusted

Between April 2015 and April 2016, Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) data shows the total number of employed in California increased by 355,079 (seasonally adjusted), or 14.2% of the total net employment gains in this period for the US. Measured by percentage change in employment over the year, California was 24th highest. Adjusted for population, California ranked 25th. While California remains the leading state when measured by total change in employment, the recent data revisions continue to show a marked drop when ranked by percentage change or change relative to population.

Labor Force Participation Rate Unchanged at 62.0%

California’s participation rate (seasonally adjusted) remained unchanged from March 2016 at 62.0%. The comparable US rate dropped 0.2% to 62.8%.

California’s seasonally adjusted labor force participation rate continues to remain below the previous lows recorded in 1976. The revised labor force data shows the participation rate has remained essentially level at this low point since August 2015, alternating between 61.9% and 62.0% during this period.

Nonfarm Jobs Increase 32,400

EDD reported that between March and April 2016, seasonally adjusted nonfarm payroll jobs increased by 32,400. The March job gains were revised upwards to 5,200 from the preliminary estimate of 4,200.

Looking at the not seasonally adjusted numbers, hiring saw increases in all but 3 industries. The change in total payroll jobs from March 2016 saw the largest increases in Farm (56,000) as seasonal hiring increased, Accommodation & Food Services (17,800), and Construction (16,500). Declines were in Information (-500), Healthcare & Social Services (-1,900), and its sub-industry Individual & Family Services (-5,000).

Not Seasonally Adjusted Payroll Jobs Mar 2016 Apr 2016 Change Apr 2016 – Mar 2016 Change Apr 2016 – Apr 2015
Total Farm 368,700 424,700 56,000 -900
Mining & Logging 24,700 25,200 500 -4,300
Construction 740,000 756,500 16,500 50,400
Manufacturing 1,276,800 1,277,900 1,100 -3,900
Wholesale Trade 733,500 735,400 1,900 19,400
Retail Trade 1,660,500 1,664,500 4,000 36,100
Transportation, Warehousing & Utilities 556,100 557,100 1,000 17,100
Information 494,500 494,000 -500 14,000
Finance & Insurance 527,400 527,900 500 4,900
Real Estate & Rental & Leasing 274,500 279,100 4,600 9,800
Professional, Scientific & Technical Services 1,237,700 1,247,700 10,000 44,100
Management of Companies & Enterprises 233,500 234,400 900 5,400
Administrative & Support & Waste Services 1,053,400 1,064,300 10,900 33,100
Educational Services 374,400 377,800 3,400 18,600
Health Care & Social Assistance 2,166,000 2,164,100 -1,900 75,000
Individual & Family Services 590,900 585,900 -5,000 22,100
Arts, Entertainment, & Recreation 292,900 301,200 8,300 15,700
Accommodation & Food Service 1,567,100 1,584,900 17,800 55,200
Other Services 547,900 552,200 4,300 7,600
Government 2,538,900 2,546,600 7,700 54,200
Total Nonfarm 16,299,800 16,390,800 91,000 452,400
Total Wage & Salary 16,668,500 16,815,500 147,000 451,500
Source: California Employment Development Department

By total number of new jobs, California had the highest increase in seasonally adjusted nonfarm jobs among the states from April 2014 to April 2015, at 450,200 or 16.7% of the US net increase. By percentage growth in jobs, California was 10th highest, and by population adjusted jobs growth, 12th highest.

Change in Nonfarm Jobs (seasonally adjusted), March 2015 – March 2016
Rank Number of Jobs Employment Growth (%) Population Adjusted
(job growth per 1,000 civilian
noninstitutional population)
1 CA 450,200 ID 3.8% DE 22.0
2 FL 254,500 DE 3.7% UT 21.5
3 TX 189,600 OR 3.5% DC 21.0
4 GA 140,800 UT 3.4% ID 20.4
5 NY 133,500 WA 3.3% OR 19.1
6 WA 104,900 GA 3.3% WA 18.4
7 MI 104,500 FL 3.2% GA 17.9
8 NC 95,600 AZ 3.1% TN 16.1
9 TN 83,800 TN 2.9% CO 15.7
10 VA 83,400 CA 2.8% FL 15.4
11 AZ 81,400 CO 2.7% AZ 15.2
12 MA 73,500 SC 2.7% CA 14.6
13 OH 71,900 NV 2.6% NV 14.4
14 CO 67,700 MI 2.5% SC 13.8
15 IL 67,500 NC 2.3% MA 13.3
16 NJ 63,900 VA 2.2% MI 13.2
17 OR 62,300 MA 2.1% VA 12.7
18 MD 55,900 MD 2.1% NC 12.1
19 PA 55,000 AR 2.1% MD 11.8
20 SC 53,200 HI 2.0% VT 11.6
US 2,692,000 US 1.9% US 10.6
Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics

Six Industries Below 2007 Pre-Recession Job Levels

Source: California Employment Development Department, Wage & Salary Jobs (seasonally adjusted), wages are running 4 quarter average from QCEW wage data

Comparing the number of jobs by industry in April 2016 (not seasonally adjusted), six industries showed employment below the 2007 pre-recession levels as Farm hiring moved into its seasonal increase. In the highest gain industries, Health Care & Social Assistance (less Individual & Family Services) remained the leading industry, followed by the two lowest wage industries in 2nd and 3rd place. The highest wage blue collar industry—Mining & Logging—remained in negative territory as oil prices remained low.

8 Counties in Double-Digit Unemployment, 19 are 5% or Less

Two-Tier Economy Persists

Unemployment rates (all data is not seasonally adjusted) continue to vary widely across the state, ranging from 3.8% in the Bay Area to more than double at 9.8% in the Central Valley.

Not Seasonally Adjusted Unemployment Rate (%) April 2016
California 5.2
Bay Area 3.8
Orange County 3.9
Los Angeles 4.7
Sacramento Region 5.1
San Diego/Imperial 5.3
Inland Empire 5.6
Central Sierra 5.9
Central Coast 6.6
Upstate California 7.2
Central Valley 9.8

By Legislative District:

Lowest 10 Unemployment Rates
CD 12 (Pelosi – D) 2.9 SD 13 (Hill – D) 2.8 AD 22 (Mullin – D) 2.7
CD 18 (Eshoo – D) 3.1 SD 11 (Leno – D) 3.2 AD 16 (Baker – R) 2.7
CD 45 (Walters – R) 3.1 SD 37 (Moorlach – R) 3.3 AD 24 (Gordon – D) 2.9
CD 14 (Speier – D) 3.2 SD 26 (Allen – D) 3.4 AD 28 (Low – D) 3.0
CD 52 (Peters – D) 3.3 SD 39 (Block – D) 3.6 AD 17 (Chiu – D) 3.2
CD 33 (Lieu – D) 3.3 SD 36 (Bates – R) 3.7 AD 19 (Ting – D) 3.2
CD 17 (Honda – D) 3.3 SD 25 (Liu – D) 3.8 AD 66 (Hadley – R) 3.2
CD 27 (Chu – D) 3.5 SD 15 (Beall – D) 3.8 AD 74 (Harper – R) 3.2
CD 48 (Rohrabacher – R) 3.7 SD 07 (Glazer – D) 3.9 AD 77 (Maienschein – R) 3.3
CD 39 (Royce – R) 3.8 SD 32 (Mendoza – D) 3.9 AD 73 (Brough – R) 3.3
Highest 10 Unemployment Rates
CD 03 (Garamendi – D) 6.6 SD 21 (Runner – R) 5.6 AD 12 (Olsen – R) 7.5
CD 01 (LaMalfa – R) 6.6 SD 31 (Roth – D) 5.7 AD 03 (Gallagher – R) 8.0
CD 20 (Farr – D) 7.4 SD 20 (Leyva – D) 5.8 AD 23 (Patterson – R) 8.6
CD 09 (McNerney – D) 7.6 SD 04 (Nielsen – R) 6.6 AD 34 (Grove – R) 8.7
CD 10 (Denham – R) 8.4 SD 05 (Galgiani – D) 8.1 AD 13 (Eggman – D) 8.7
CD 23 (McCarthy – R) 9.0 SD 08 (Berryhill – R) 8.1 AD 26 (Mathis – R) 10.6
CD 22 (Nunes – R) 9.1 SD 40 (Hueso – D) 8.8 AD 31 (Arambula – D) 11.0
CD 51 (Vargas – D) 10.3 SD 16 (Fuller – R) 8.8 AD 21 (Gray – D) 11.1
CD 16 (Costa – D) 11.0 SD 12 (Cannella – R) 9.6 AD 56 (Garcia – D) 11.7
CD 21 (Valadao – R) 11.8 SD 14 (Vidak – R) 12.5 AD 32 (Salas – D) 12.5


8 California MSAs in the 10 Worst Unemployment Rates Nationally

While employment continues to improve in parts of the state, other portions of California continue to experience some of the worst unemployment rates in the nation. Of the 10 Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) with the worst unemployment rates nationally, 8 are in California. Of the 20 worst, 12 are in California.

US Rank MSA Mar 2016
Unemployment Rate
368 Vineland-Bridgeton, NJ Metropolitan Statistical Area 8.1
369 Danville, IL Metropolitan Statistical Area 8.4
370 Santa Cruz-Watsonville, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area 8.8
370 Stockton-Lodi, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area 8.8
370 Wheeling, WV-OH Metropolitan Statistical Area 8.8
373 Beckley, WV Metropolitan Statistical Area 8.9
374 Yakima, WA Metropolitan Statistical Area 9.1
375 Weirton-Steubenville, WV-OH Metropolitan Statistical Area 9.2
376 Modesto, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area 9.6
377 Madera, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area 10.5
377 Salinas, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area 10.5
379 Fresno, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area 10.6
380 Yuba City, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area 11.0
381 Hanford-Corcoran, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area 11.4
382 Bakersfield, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area 11.6
383 Visalia-Porterville, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area 12.4
384 Merced, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area 12.5
385 Ocean City, NJ Metropolitan Statistical Area 13.3
386 Yuma, AZ Metropolitan Statistical Area 13.8
387 El Centro, CA Metropolitan Statistical Area 18.6

Cost of Living Growing Faster in California

As measured by the consumer price index (CPI-U, all urban consumers, not seasonally adjusted), the cost of living has been rising faster in California over the past year than in the US as whole. The chart below compares the two rates, measured as the running 12 month percentage change.

The higher costs in California have been led by fuel & utilities, apparel, medical care, recreation, shelter (rent and homeowners’ rent equivalent), and food & beverages. Changes below the US average have been experienced in other goods & services, transportation, and education & communications.

The California CPI is not directly measured by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. Instead, it is a composite measure formed by combining the data for Los Angeles-Riverside-Orange County and San Francisco-Oakland-San Jose MSAs using a formula developed by California Department of Industrial Relations.

County/Regional Employment by Industry Updates

The Data Tool now has the 2015 Q3 updates for employment and wages by industry for the state, counties, and regions.

Note: All data sources, methodologies, and historical data series available at CenterforJobs.org.