Orange County’s unemployment rate rose to 3.9% in August — the highest in 20 months — from a revised 3.6% in July and above the 3.2% rate seen in August last year, according to the state’s Employment Development Department.
It’s the highest level since 4.2% in January 2022.
The state’s unemployment rate was 5.1% in August while the U.S.’s was 3.9%.
Still, nonfarm OC employment gained 4,100 jobs from July to August when 1.71 million were employed.
The county has surpassed the February 2020 pre-pandemic employment level of 1.68 million jobs.
Six of the 11 industry sectors saw job increases.
Leading the job increase were private education and health services, increasing 3,000 jobs. Also up were government, 1,700, and manufacturing, up 1,000.
Two sectors had declines, construction, down 900, and leisure and hospitality, down 900.
About 18.1 million worked in California in August, an increase of 23,100 nonfarm payroll jobs from July and up about 335,200 jobs from a year earlier.
Seven of the 11 industry sectors added jobs month-over-month, led by private education and health services, up 14,000.
Most of the losses came in the information sector, down 9,000, because of the writers and actors’ strikes.
People receiving unemployment benefits fell by 6,988 to 394,757.