San Benito County’s unemployment rate increased in January as expected, due to fluctuations in the agriculture industry, but the statewide figure barely ticked up for the month.
The latest jobless figures for January showed unemployment at 6.6 percent in January. That’s when the ag industry really slows to a grind for many producers, so the unemployment rate generally follows suit in the winter months here.
The state just recently released the January data due to additional industry benchmarking work that must be done to start the year. The state Employment Development Department is expected to release February figures March 22, according to EDD, while the previously published national numbers were a disappointment with just 20,000 non-farm payroll jobs added that month.
The shift in agriculture makes it hard to compare numbers for San Benito County in the winter, but the state figure held steady at 4.2 percent. San Benito County’s jobless rate was 5.6 percent in December and 4.9 percent in November.
San Benito County’s unemployment rate in January 2018, meanwhile, was 6 percent, according to the EDD.