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Friday, Dec 21 2012 05:09 PM

Unemployment rate up slightly in Kern County

By CALIFORNIAN STAFF AND WIRE REPORTS

The latest jobless data shows unemployment was up slightly in Kern County in November from the month before, but almost a percentage point better than the same time last year.

The jobless rate was 12.4 percent in November, up from a revised 12.2 percent in October and below the last year's estimate of 13.3 percent, according to figures released Friday by the state's Employment Development Department.

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November unemployment rate by city:

Arvin: 32.5 percent

Bakersfield: 8.7 percent

California City: 9.8 percent

Delano: 31.3 percent

Maricopa: 13.1 percent

McFarland: 25.8 percent

Ridgecrest: 7.1 percent

Shafter: 22.1 percent

Taft: 12.2 percent

Tehachapi : 7.8 percent

Wasco: 23 percent

Source: Employment Development Department

The county lost 6,000 farm jobs in the last month because of seasonal work, only 300 fewer farm jobs at the same point last year, according to the figures.

Construction and manufacturing were each down 300 jobs from October, but there was a gain of 500 construction jobs and 700 manufacturing jobs from November 2011.

The figures also show a gain of 1,100 jobs in trade, transportation and utilities in November. Overall, there was no change from November of this year to November of last year in that category.

Statewide figures were relatively rosy, with the jobless rate dipping below 10 percent in November for the first time since the recession began, according to The Associated Press. A 9.8 percent unemployment rate was reported, down from 10.1 percent in October.

The last time the rate dropped into single digits was in January 2009 at 9.7 percent, The AP reported. Economists had predicted California's unemployment rate would remain in double digits through 2013.

The AP reported the recovery was led by business and professional services, which added 74,000 jobs, and the information sector, which had the biggest percentage gain with an increase of nearly 6 percent.

Mining and logging; manufacturing; other services; and government lost a collective 51,000 jobs over the last year, according to The AP. Government was down the most with losing 34,500 jobs.

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