The jobless rate in Riverside County climbed back to a near 16-year high in May, with payrolls shrinking or stagnating in most sectors of the Inland Empire economy, state officials reported today.
The non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in Riverside County, based on preliminary estimates, was 13.1 percent last month. That's just shy of the 13.3 percent level recorded in March, which was the highest rate since August 1993 when unemployment reached 13.5 percent, according to the California Economic Development Department.
The county's jobless rate was two percentage points higher than in April and almost six percentage points more than the year before, when unemployment stood at 7.5 percent in Riverside County, EDD figures showed.
An estimated 120,200 county residents were out of work in May.
For Riverside and San Bernardino counties combined, the unemployment rate edged up to 13 percent, from 12.7 percent in April, according to EDD.
Bi-county data showed job cuts or zero job growth in most sectors of the regional economy, with the exception of construction, which reversed eight straight months of declines, adding 600 positions.
Government payrolls dropped sharply last month, mainly at the federal level, where 1,000 non-defense-related positions were cut, according to EDD figures.
The total size of the civilian labor force in Riverside and San Bernardino counties in May was 1,789,700, with 232,500 unemployed.
The non-seasonally-adjusted jobless rate for California last month was 11.2 percent, and the national unemployment rate was 9.4 percent.