Santa Clarita’s employment numbers continue improvement


Santa Clarita’s employment numbers continued to outpace the county in April, but fell slightly behind the state’s figure for April, which also continued to improve. 

Statewide, California’s post-pandemic recovery is still heading in the right direction: Of the 2,714,800 total nonfarm jobs lost in March and April 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the state has recovered nearly half (48% or 1,302,100 jobs) since last May.

The city’s attributed its proactive efforts and business-friendly policies as a big part of why its unemployment rate stayed in the single digits at 9.6%, while Los Angeles County’s continued to hover around 11.7%, which is up 0.3% from last month’s seasonally adjusted rate of 11.4%. 

“Santa Clarita’s latest unemployment rate for April is 9.6% which shows steady improvement since the onset of the pandemic,” said Monica Fawcett, economic development associate for the city of Santa Clarita. “March’s unemployment rate was 9.8% and April 2020’s unemployment rate was staggering at 17.7%.”

April’s numbers marked a steady improvement, she added, which received a huge boost locally from the reopening of restaurants, as well as a return of quite a bit of filming activity. 

“While the pandemic has significantly increased unemployment rates overall when compared to pre-pandemic unemployment rates, recovery remains consistent with decreasing unemployment rates month over month since the onset of the pandemic,” Fawcett added. “The reopening of businesses and the easing of operational restrictions have helped our local economy tremendously. We are eager for continued progress in recovery efforts for our businesses and community.”

While the city didn’t have the exact growth numbers available for some of the sectors that saw gains, the local improvement were silmilar to statewide gains. 

Seven industry sectors added jobs over the month, according to the data available from the state.  Leisure and hospitality (up 19,900 jobs) posted the largest gain, with its third consecutive month-over increase, according to a statement from Olga Perez of the state’s EDD. Its increase accounted for 58% of total nonfarm employment growth. Growth was spread across both accommodation and food services (up 14,800) and arts, entertainment, and recreation (up 5,100).

Statewide, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 8.3% in April 2021, 8.3% in March 2021, and 16% a year ago in April 2020, according to the statewide data released by the Employment Development Division. The comparable estimates for the nation were 6.1% in April 2021, 6% in March 2021 and 14.8% a year ago.

Countywide, the government sector was down the most with year-over losses of 38,200. Reductions in local government (down 26,600) and state government (down 12,200) with an offset in federal government (up 600) accounted for the contraction in government.

Santa Clarita has seen its unemployment rate nearly cut in half since its record-high, pandemic-induced numbers last April.

Five other sectors added jobs over the year: educational and health services (up 50,100), professional and business services (up 34,300), construction (up 17,600), other services (up 11,200), manufacturing (up 10,500), information (up 8,200), and financial activities (up 1,400). Mining and logging remained unchanged. 

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