The jobs data released today show barely a pulse in California’s labor market. The state gained just 1,600 jobs in November – not nearly enough jobs to make a dent in the state’s unemployment rate, which remained at 12.4 percent for the fourth month in a row. California is now tied with Michigan for the second-highest jobless rate in the nation, after Nevada. Since May, California has lost an average of 7,500 jobs per month – a notable change from the first five months of the year, when the state added an average of 19,700 jobs per month.
On the upside, President Obama is expected to sign into law today a bill that includes provisions that would provide a much-needed boost to the economy. These provisions include a 13-month renewal of federally supported Unemployment Insurance (UI) benefits, which expired at the end of November, and extension of several tax credits for working families that were part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) and were set to expire at the end of the year.
— Alissa Anderson