The unemployment rate in San Diego County grew in January to 11 percent, the highest it has been so far in the current economic slump.

That was up from 10.3 percent in December, according to data released today by the state Employment Development Department.

San Diego’s jobless rate was worse than the national 10.6 percent rate in January, but better than the California rate of 13.2 percent.

(To keep this comparison simple, none of these rates are seasonally adjusted.)

The county lost 17,400 jobs between December and January, socked especially in retail jobs and in leisure and hospitality — sectors where businesses typically often add workers during the winter holidays and let them go afterward.

But beyond that expected seasonal loss, other sectors lost workers compared to the same month a year ago. Only one sector — education and health services — out of the 12 sectors the state looks at actually added jobs compared to a year earlier.


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