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California’s Adding Jobs, But Gains Are Slowing And Unemployment Remains High

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(California Employment Development Department)
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California gained about 140,000 jobs in July and its unemployment rate fell to 13.3%, down from nearly 15% in June.

But a new jobs report released today by the state’s Employment Development Department shows job growth in the state slowing down compared with gains earlier this summer.

Things are moving in the right direction, but not as fast as they were in June, said Taner Osman, a research manager with L.A.-based Beacon Economics. That was when many businesses were reopening, and the state picked up more than 542,000 jobs. Osman said:

“A lot of the exuberance that we felt back in June has been tempered somewhat by the slow … rate of job growth. So it's positive that jobs have been added, but we've dug ourselves quite a hole.”

L.A. County’s unemployment rate also fell last month, but it remains among the highest in the state, at 18.2%. Compared with other parts of the state, L.A.’s economy relies more heavily on jobs in leisure and hospitality, a sector where job growth was pretty flat from June to July.
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Osman said if California continues on this current pace of job growth, the state won’t return to pre-pandemic employment levels until next July.

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