I.E. unemployment rate inches to 8 percent

      Unemployment keeps shooting upward in San Bernardino and Riverside counties and now stands at 8 percent, according to June numbers released on Friday by the state’s Employment Development Department.
     It stood at 5 percent in late 2006.
     From May to June, most job losses came from local government. Federal, state and local government laid off 1,700 employees, the area’s greatest month-over-month decline, the report says.
     The leisure and hospitality business shed 1,200 workers during the same period. The arts, entertainment, accommodation, recreation and food services industries each slashed 600 jobs.
     It’s no surprise that the two-county region’s badly-bruised housing sector is spilling over into other areas, but residential construction workers are taking the worst beating.
     Throughout the mid- to late-1990s and during the housing boom, the area’s construction employment soared to more than 127,000 jobs by 2006, according to a quarterly economic report released on Friday by Redlands-based regional economist John Husing.
     But in two years, the counties lost more than 28,000 of these jobs — about 22 percent of the hiring peak in 2006.
     We’re facing “the most challenging economy in over four decades,” Husing states. “2008 will be the first year since at least 1964 when the economy will have a net job loss.”
     The region’s 8-percent unemployment rate hasn’t been seen since the mid-1990s.
     –matthew.wrye@inlandnewspapers.com

     Look below to read the latest unemployment report from the state’s Employment Development Department:


 

RIVERSIDE-SAN BERNARDINO-ONTARIO METROPOLITAN STATISTICAL AREA (MSA)

(RIVERSIDE AND SAN BERNARDINO COUNTIES)

Region declined by 1,900 nonfarm jobs over the month; 25,800 over the year

The unemployment rate in the Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario MSA was 8.0 percent in June 2008, up from a revised 7.5 percent in May 2008, and above the year-ago estimate of 5.9 percent. This compares with an unadjusted unemployment rate of 7.0 percent for California and 5.7 percent for the nation during the same period. The unemployment rate was 8.3 percent for Riverside County and 7.8 percent in San Bernardino County.

Between May 2008 and June 2008, total nonfarm employment declined by 1,900 and settled at 1,252,200 jobs. Total farm employment gained 3,900 jobs, or 20 percent.

  1. Three industry sectors, including professional and business services, educational and health services, and other services reported the greatest nonfarm month-over increases, adding 300 jobs each.
  2. Government reported the greatest month-over decline, down 1,700 jobs. Local government decreased by 1,300 jobs, followed by state government (down 300) and federal government (down 100).
  3. Leisure and hospitality decreased by 1,200 jobs, which followed seasonal employment trends. Arts, entertainment and recreation and accommodation and food services contracted by 600 jobs each.

Between June 2007 and June 2008, total nonfarm employment declined by 25,800, or -2.0 percent. Total farm employment gained 400 jobs, or 1.7 percent.

  1. Educational and health services recorded the greatest year-over gain, adding 4,200 jobs. Healthcare and social assistance grew by 3,300 jobs, followed by an additional 900 in educational services.
  2. Government added 3,100 jobs, mostly in local government (up 2,400). State government increased by 500 jobs, while federal government gained 200.
  3. Construction reported the greatest year-over decline, down 17,200 jobs. Specialty trade contractors decreased by 14,400 jobs, mainly from building foundation and exterior contractors (down 9,600). Construction of buildings decreased by 2,700 jobs and heavy and civil engineering construction declined by 100 jobs.

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