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City encouraged by economic conditions

Posted: March 8, 2014 10:15 p.m.
Updated: March 8, 2014 10:15 p.m.
 

Santa Clarita’s jobless rate inched up slightly in January to 5.5 percent, up from 5.3 percent in December, the state Employment Development Department reported Friday.

The post-holiday uptick in unemployment is expected following seasonal hiring increases.

More notable, however, is that the city’s jobless rate is more than a full percentage point less than it was one year ago.

In 2013, the January unemployment rate for Santa Clarita was 6.7 percent.

It’s encouraging news to see the economy improve, along with the confidence picking up in the business community, said Ken Striplin, city manager for Santa Clarita.

“At City Hall, we are seeing encouraging economic indicators such as an increase in permitting — another positive sign for our local economy,” Striplin said.

Both the state and Los Angeles County unemployment rates dropped slightly in January.

California’s unemployment rate decreased to 8.1 percent in January – down from 8.3 percent. Los Angeles County came in at 9 percent — down from 9.2 percent in December.

The U.S. unemployment rate was 6.6 percent in January.

Statewide, the construction industry posted the largest gains in January, up 4.4 percent, adding 27,300 jobs.
Nationally, however, jobless numbers have already been reported for February. The U.S. unemployment rate remained unchanged at 6.7 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The release of unemployment numbers by the state of California is lagging a month behind the national information release.

The state doesn’t expect to release February unemployment numbers until March 21.

As for the January unemployment picture, compared to other cities with like-sized labor forces, Santa Clarita’s unemployment rate is lower than that of Glendale (7.8 percent), Burbank (7.3 percent) and Pasadena (6.8 percent).
To the north, rates in the Antelope Valley remain higher than the state and county rates — Lancaster’s rate is 12.7 percent and Palmdale’s is 11.2 percent.

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