Job Market

Unemployment in California falls to 4.9%, lowest since 2006

Unemployment in California falls to 4.9%, lowest since 2006

California piled on 19,300 jobs in March and its unemployment rate dropped to 4.9%, according to figures released Friday by the state’s Employment Development Department. That’s the first time since December 2006 that the jobless rate has fallen below 5%.

It was another month of solid but not breathtaking job gains in a state that has slowed a bit after years of unbridled growth.

Still, California grew faster than the rest of the country in March, expanding at a rate of 2.1% year over year, compared with 1.5% nationwide. Californians were still slightly more likely to be unemployed; the U.S. jobless rate hit 4.5% in March.

The standout sector in March was construction,...

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