published on May 21, 2021 - 1:25 PM
Written by The Business Journal Staff

A year after the Covid-19 pandemic devastated Central Valley payrolls, unemployment rates appear to be stabilizing as operating restrictions fade away.

According to the latest data from the state Employment Development Department, Fresno County’s unemployment rate for April was 9.6%, down from 9.9% in March and above 17.1% a year ago.

Month over month, farm employment posted a normal seasonal increase of 2,500, followed by leisure & hospitality with an additional 1,300 and an 800 job uptick in construction.

Year to date, trade, transportation & utilities recorded the largest increase of 9,700 jobs — 5,6000 in retail. Leisure & hospitality saw an increase of 6,500 jobs, with 78% of those in accommodation and food services. Professional & business services climbed by 3,100 jobs.

Kings County saw an unemployment rate of 10.2% in April, down from 10.5% in March and below 16.9% a year ago.

While there wasn’t much of a month-to-month change, on the annual basis, leisure & hospitality saw the biggest gain with 900 jobs added. Government saw the largest decrease with 500 jobs lost.

Madera County reached an unemployment rate of 9.5%, unchanged from March and below 17.4% a year ago.

Farms saw the largest drop month over month, shedding 900 jobs. On an annual basis, leisure & hospitality and trade, transportation & utilities each saw a gain of 900 jobs.

Tulare County’s unemployment rate for April was 11%, down from 11.6% in March and below 18.6% a year ago.

Month over month, the largest gain was seen in mining, logging & construction with 200 jobs. On the annual basis, trade, transportation & utilities saw the largest increase of 2,500 jobs, followed by leisure & hospitality with 1,500 jobs.

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