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Sacramento’s job growth dipped again, but above national average – CSER Economy Watch November 2012

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Sacramento’s job growth dipped again, but remained in positive territory above the national average.

Annual job growth in the six-county Sacramento Region dropped slightly in October 2012. According to preliminary data, the region posted 1.7 percent job growth for the 12-month period ending October 2012, adding 13,900 jobs to payrolls. 

This rate of growth was between the statewide and national averages and well above the negative job growth seen at the same point in the previous year. Sacramento’s October job growth marked the seventh straight month in positive territory following 53 months of annual losses.

Three of the region’s five largest sectors posted positive job growth including Professional & Business Services; Trade, Transportation, & Utilities; and Educational & Health Services. Professional & Business Services posted 4.1 percent job growth in October 2012 as demand for services continues to increase with general economic recovery. The Trade, Transportation, & Utilities sector saw 3.1 percent job growth as an increase in consumer sentiment and improving economic conditions drove gains the largest component of the sector, retail trade. Although job growth in the Educational & Health Services sector has dipped recently, it still remains healthy at 2.5 percent as a result of gains in health services. Sacramento’s Leisure & Hospitality sector posted no growth between October 2011 and 2012 as erratic performance in the sector continued.

The Government sector shed 0.9 percent of payroll jobs in the Sacramento Region over the past 12 months with losses primarily in state government activities. Poor performance in the latter two sectors tempered the gains generated in the three other large sectors, leading to the dip in overall regional job growth.

California’s job growth remained fairly stable in October 2012 coming in a 2.1 percent. The preliminary data show an annual increase of over 296,000 jobs statewide. Nationally job growth has been flat in the past year. Between October 2011 and 2012, the nation posted a gain of roughly 1.9 million jobs with 1.4 percent growth.

The San Francisco Bay Area continued to see strong performance exceeding the statewide average and ranking as one of the top-performing major regions in the country. In October 2012, the SF Bay Area posted 3.0 percent job growth with an annual gain of more than 83,000 jobs. Ending its sharp downward pattern, the Stockton market posted 3.3 percent annual job growth in October 2012 with an addition of over 6,000 jobs in the past 12 months. The Solano market dropped below the national average in October 2012 with 1.2 percent job growth, equating to a 1,400-job increase.


Annual Job Growth 

Annual Job Growth


Major Sector Annual Job Gains and Losses

Major Sector Annual Job Gains and Losses



Most components of the Region’s private sector added jobs in the past year

Seven of the Sacramento region’s eleven major sectors added jobs between October 2011 and 2012. Both the Trade, Transportation, & Utilities and Professional & Business Services sectors posted annual gains of more than 4,000 jobs. Only the Government sector showed substantial losses in the 12 months ending October 2012, shedding 2,200 jobs. Sacramento’s Information and Other Services posted minimal annual losses. The net annual increase of 13,900 in the Sacramento Region shifted total Nonfarm employment up to 852,700. Although employment is clearly showing an upward pattern, it remains around year 2001 levels.

California also added jobs in 7 of the 11 major sectors in the past 12 months. The Professional & Business Services sector showed the greatest gains statewide while the Government sector posted the largest declines. The SF Bay Area experienced annual losses in only three major sectors. Like the state, Professional & Business Services was the leading sector in the SF Bay Area among those with positive job growth in October 2012. Stockton’s Trade, Transportation, & Utilities and Educational & Health Services sectors posted the most pronounced annual gains while losses were confined to the Government and Other Services sectors. The Solano market saw losses in two major sectors and no growth in three others in October 2012. The Trade, Transportation, & Utilities sector showed the largest annual gains in this market.

The Center for Strategic Economic Research (CSER) is an economic research and consulting group specializing in applied research and strategy development in the regional economics and economic development fields. Learn more at www.strategiceconomicresearch.org

CSER is grateful for the support of the Signature Underwriter, UC Davis Health System, and Supporting Underwriters of the Economy Watch, Cushman & Wakefield, Los Rios Community College District, Sacramento Municipal Utility District, Sacramento Works, Weintraub Tobin and Wells Fargo.


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