California's Employment Development Department and the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics released California's January 2019 state jobs report last Friday. Statewide nonfarm employment grew by an estimated 3,000 in January, the lowest reported growth number since July 2018. The official unemployment rate ticked up to 4.2 percent, slightly above the 4.1 percent rate that stood for the entire second half of 2018.
The figure below summarizes nonfarm employment by sector based on the monthly survey of employers. Overall employment in the state grew 1.4 percent over the previous 12 months (as of January), somewhat below the nation’s 1.9 percent growth rate. As the figure shows, the state added jobs at a slower pace than the nation in all but one (professional and technical services) of the 12 largest sectors, although in most cases the gap between the state and national growth rates was fairly small.