SACRAMENTO -- California has been gaining jobs at the fastest rate since the boom year of 2006 and more rapidly than the nation as a whole, according to the new 2011 Labor Day Briefing from the California Employment Development Department (EDD).
"California's economy is on the way back, but the road to recovery is long and we must create more jobs," Marty Morgenstern, Secretary of the California Labor and Workforce Development Agency, said in a news release about the briefing.
With the private sector leading the way, the state added 189,400 jobs from July 2010 to July 2011, a 1.4 percent increase over a one-year period, according to the news release. That was the strongest year-over job growth in July in five years, and it contrasts with California's loss of more than one million jobs from July 2008 to July 2009.
Since steep job losses ended in September 2009, California employers have added 223,600 jobs, with the strongest growth coming from the private sector, according to the EDD release. Over the year ending in July 2011, private employers added 222,400 jobs, with the private sector gaining 133,300 jobs in the first seven months of this year. California is outpacing the nation in private sector job growth.
Cutbacks in both state and local government employment have tempered overall job growth in the state, according to the release. From July 2009 through July 2011, the government sector lost 138,600 jobs -- 128,100 of them in local government.
Despite the job gains, "the economic recovery had yet to generate sufficient employment growth to make much of a dent in unemployment," the news release said. The state's unemployment rate has dipped from a record high of 12.5 percent last fall to 12.0 percent in July, but "unemployment will likely remain high for months to come unless the pace of job growth strengthens."
Hiring increased across a wide range of industries over the past year, as eight of the state's 11 job sectors posted gains through July. The construction industry managed to expand, adding 13,100 jobs.
Professional and Business Services led the way with a gain of 59,400 jobs. More than half of those gains came in the high-wage professional, scientific, and technical services subsector.
Educational and health services had the second highest total job gain, adding 50,200 jobs -- 34,600 of them in health services -- over the year ending in July 2011.
Boosted by exports, manufacturing added 15,000 jobs, its first year-over gain in July since 2004.
Information gained 30,000 jobs -- a 7.1 percent increase that was the fastest of any California industry sector.
In addition to government, other sectors losing jobs were financial activities, with a loss of 3,100, and other services, with a loss of 1,100 jobs.
Several industry sectors are projected to show the most growth: professional and business services, educational services, health care and social assistance and leisure and hospitality. The EDD briefing also outlined the types of occupations within industries where job demand is expected to grow, and broke down the jobs by the training and education required.
These occupations require up to one year of training:
Executive secretaries: median wage $48,067. Projected openings* 2010- 2012: 13,500.
Sales representatives, wholesale and manufacturing: median wage $56,673. Projected openings* 2010-2012: 13,700.
These job opportunities require two years of training, education or long-term work experience:
Registered nurses: median wage $86,547. Projected openings* 2010-2012: 17,310.
Office support supervisors: median wage $54,388. Projected openings* 2010-2012: 13,530.
These occupations require a bachelor's degree or higher:
Computer software engineers, applications: median wage $102,269. Projected openings* 2010-2012: 8,600.
Accountants and auditors: median wage $68,694. Projected openings* 2010-2012: 11,080.
*Openings reflect the sum of new jobs and replacements. Replacements reflect when employees permanently leave their occupations or the labor force altogether (for example, when workers retire). Many of these openings are a result of replacements, not growth within an occupation.