SLO County’s unemployment rate at 4.4 percent for November

San Luis Obispo County’s jobless rate was 4.4 percent in November, a significant drop from 5.4 percent in November 2014, though slightly above October’s revised 4.3 percent rate.

Because of seasonal work fluctuations, which can be significant, unemployment data are compared with the same month year over year as an indicator of overall trends in joblessness.

The California Employment Development Department releases monthly data on employment and industry rates.

The county’s rate for November was below the unadjusted unemployment rates of 5.7 percent for California and 4.8 percent for the nation last month.

The county’s rate was seventh best among the California’s 58 counties, tied with Alameda County. San Mateo County reported the lowest November jobless rate in the state, at 3.1 percent. Imperial County reported the highest, at 20.4 percent.

Last month, 137,400 people were counted as employed in San Luis Obispo County out of a total civilian labor force of 143,700. The labor force includes everyone working and looking for work.

Excluding the self-employed, companies and agencies in the county reported 4,300 more jobs in November than in the same month last year — a 3.8 percent increase.

Gains in the educational and health services industries boosted job growth in the county, with 1,200 total jobs added in November — an 8.1 percent increase year over year. Gains in the mining, logging and construction industries also led employment in the county in November, with 1,100 jobs added — up 16.7 percent from the same month last year.

The professional and business services industries lost a net total of 200 jobs in November, down 1.6 percent from November 2014.

Of the largest cities in the county, Atascadero reported the lowest jobless rate last month, at 3.6 percent, with 600 of its 15,400 residents eligible for the workforce counted as unemployed, according to subcounty data from the Employment Development Department.

The city of San Luis Obispo’s jobless rate was 4.6 percent in November, with 1,200 of its 26,200 eligible residents counted as unemployed.

Paso Robles reported a rate of 4.9 percent, with 800 of its 16,400 eligible workers unemployed.

Arroyo Grande reported a rate of 3.8 percent, with 400 of its 9,700 eligible workers unemployed.

Data may not add up because of rounding; all unemployment rates reported are calculated on unrounded data. Because of a smaller workforce at the city level, subcounty rates are subject to large month-to-month fluctuations.

Danielle Ames: 805-781-7902