San Diego County shed jobs again in July, according to the EDD’s latest estimates. As in the prior month, the problem wasn’t that the housing-related sectors accelerated their decline, but rather that the non-housing sectors were unable to make up for housing’s weakness as they had in the past.
The construction industry was hardest hit, as usual, down from the prior July by 7,500 jobs or 8.4 percent. The financial sector, which includes real estate, was down by 4,700 jobs or 5.8 percent. And the retail sector, which I have grouped in with the housing-related sectors because it had previously benefited so greatly from the home equity ATM, was down by 2,200 jobs or 1.5 percent.
The remainder of the economy had been bouncing along at a year-over-year growth rate of about 15,000 jobs. The non-housing economy has weakened, however, and for the last couple of months has grown at closer to 10,000 jobs (July in specific saw growth of 9,800 jobs or 1.0 percent).
As growth in the rest of the economy has become less able to offset housing-related weakness, the overall employment picture has darkened. In total, San Diego lost 4,600 jobs on a year-over-year basis, a decline of .4 percent. The county’s unemployment rate rose to 6.4 percent.
— RICH TOSCANO