The news has been pretty good on the San Diego job front this year.  Not great, or even close to it — but good.  Employment rose steadily in the year through June even when accounting for the temporary effect of US Census jobs.  Employment decreased in July, but this is a seasonal effect that happens each year largely as a result of school getting out.  Despite the summer break for educators, July saw employment in the “non-bubble” sectors of the economy grow on a year-over-year basis for the first time since October 2008.

Last month, in contrast, was not so good.  That is, according to the estimates from the payroll survey conducted each month by California’s Employee Development Department.

The graph below shows that San Diego employment is estimated to have dropped by .2 percent between July and August:

Unlike July’s decline, that is not a normal seasonal affair.  Monthly job growth was positive in all of the past five years except for 2008, and that year it fell by an almost-imperceptible .04 percent.  August even eked out a gain in 2009, one of the most miserable years for employment on record.

Even the non-bubble sectors dipped back into negative year-over-year territory:

This unusually weak August showing is a sign that San Diego’s previously consistent, if rather anemic, job recovery is no longer so consistent.  This is just one month of data, but it fits in with the many national statistics indicating that the rate of economic recovery slowing significantly.

Please contact Rich Toscano at

Rich Toscano has been observing the housing market for Voice of San Diego, with the occasional prolonged absence, since 2006. Follow him on Twitter at...

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