California's Unemployment Rate Hit 11.2 percent In March

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(Sacramento, CA)
Friday, April 17, 2009
California now has the fourth highest unemployment rate in the nation.  The State Employment Development Department says it hit 11.2 percent last month.

Capital Public Radio's Steve Shadley reports…

The state says California lost more than 62-thousand jobs in March…and that's what's pushed the rate up so quickly.  In February the state's adjusted jobless rate was at 10.6 percent. 
Esmael Adibi is Director of Economic Research at Chapman University in Orange County.  He says one of the only bright spots is agriculture which gained jobs last month…and that's good for California's central valley… 
"Unfortunately for southern California and northern California…more important than that is professional business services…such as accountants, attorneys, architects, and financial services.  These are high value added jobs that are lost and unfortunately I don't see those things coming back very soon…"
Adibi says California also is starting to see a loss in health care jobs, which typically fares better than other sectors during economic downturns.  Nationally, the unemployment rate hit eight-and-a-half-percent in March.