Los Angeles County’s unemployment rate fell to 5.5% in April from a revised 5.7% in March and employers in the county added 13,000 jobs to their payrolls according to recently released state numbers.
April’s 5.5% unemployment rate was the lowest since the pandemic first hit in March 2020 and was an improvement over the 10.4% rate in April of last year. The rate has fallen by more than two-thirds since the maximum pandemic-related shutdown of the economy in May 2020, when it stood at 19.2%.
However, L.A. County’s unemployment rate continued to lag behind statewide numbers where the rate stood at 4.8% in April. L.A. County’s rate was also higher than the national unemployment rate of 3.6%.
The California state Employment Development Department also released a breakdown of unemployment rates for cities within the county; those rates differ from the countywide average because they are not adjusted for seasonal factors like holiday hiring. The two largest cities, Los Angeles and Long Beach, posted seasonally unadjusted rates of 4.9% and 4.8% respectively.
Among cities with at least 10,000 people in the labor force, Lancaster had the highest unemployment rate at 7.3%, while Lomita had the lowest at 2.2%.
Meanwhile, employers in L.A. County reported a net 13,300 more jobs on their payrolls in April than in March, matching similar increase in February and March.
L.A. County has gained nearly 660,000, or 84%, of the 785,000 payroll jobs lost during the first pandemic lockdown in the spring of 2020. The county is still short nearly 125,000 payroll jobs of the pre-pandemic peak of 4.62 million reached in February 2020.