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California's Unemployment Rate Holds Steady In September At 5.5 Percent

California added 30,000 jobs in September, a modest showing made worse by the news that the state’s 63,000 August job gain was revised down to 48,000.

California’s unemployment rate held steady last month at 5.5 percent.

Even though California’s statewide unemployment rate has been dropping – and is now within half a point of the national average – when you look at the county level, the unemployment rate still wildly fluctuates depending on what part of the state you live in. The seasonally unadjusted unemployment rate for San Mateo County was just 3.1 percent last month. In Imperial County – down by the Mexico border – it was 22.7 percent.

The unchanged jobless rate in September comes despite more than 100,000 Californians joining the labor force. Not all of them found jobs. But it shows the state’s economy was able to absorb those extra workers without the unemployment rate rising.

The four-county Sacramento area added five-thousand jobs last month. The region’s non-seasonally adjusted jobless rate stands at 5.2 percent – down slightly from a year ago.

Ben Adler

Capitol Bureau Chief

Capitol Bureau Chief Ben Adler first became a public radio listener in the car on his way to preschool – though not necessarily by choice. Now, he leads Capital Public Radio’s state Capitol coverage, which airs on NPR stations across California.  Read Full Bio