Analyst: California Jobs Lagging Behind US Recovery

SACRAMENTO (CBS/AP) — The jobless rate in California inched downward in February, but still remains far higher than the national average as millions of workers are still without a job.

The state Employment Development Department on Friday reported that California’s jobless rate was 12.4 percent in January, down slightly from 12.5 percent in December.

About 2.2 million Californians remain out of work.

The state’s jobless rate has been at or above 12 percent for 17 months. Also Friday, the U.S. Labor Department reported that the national unemployment rate had fallen to 8.9 percent, the lowest level since April 2009.

Brad Kemp, Director of Regional Research for Beacon Economics, tells KNX 1070 that California is clearly lagging behind the rest of the U.S. when it comes to rebounding from the recession.

California added 12,500 nonfarm jobs in January, bringing the state’s total to nearly 14 million. Gains were seen in five of 11 sectors surveyed, including construction, manufacturing and government.

Education and financial, health and business services also reported job losses.

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