Workers Exit California Labor Force, Unemployment Remains Near Record Lows

California’s unemployment rate remains at a record low of 4.2% in the latest U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics jobs report. Yet, the state’s strong economy, which recorded its 99th consecutive month of expansion since 2010, also is experiencing a historically low labor force participation rate of 62%.

The civilian labor force has lost more than 50,000 workers since February, with June’s 800 new jobs reflective of California’s weak monthly job gains this year.

Nationally, June’s unemployment rates were lower in nine states, higher in three states, and stable in 38 states and the District of Columbia, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported. The national unemployment rate rose by 0.2 percentage point from May to 4%, but was 0.3 point lower than in June 2017. Hawaii had the lowest unemployment rate in June, 2.1%.

Five states had over-the-month increases in nonfarm payroll employment in June 2018. The largest increases occurred in Massachusetts (+21,400), Illinois (+18,100), and Georgia (+14,200). The largest annual job gains have occurred in Texas (+359,500), California (+269,100), and Florida (+170,500).

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