Headwinds Buffet California Jobs Recovery

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New state unemployment data released this week highlights the headwinds that continue to buffet California’s economic recovery and the importance of not assuming the state’s economic dominance is pre-ordained. According to a report in the San Francisco Chronicle, a total of 145,367 newly laid-off state residents filed for benefits for the week that ended April 3, almost 40,000 more than the prior week, or a 36.6% surge. California accounted for almost one fifth of the nation’s 744,000 new claims, far more than the state’s 11.8% share of the labor force. Nationwide, claims rose by 16,000 or just 2.1%.

Another story in the Wall Street Journal similarly offered dour news for California’s employment prospects and suggested that strong employment gains in other states may give them a competitive edge in the future. The news comes as the Bay Area Council makes progress in building an unprecedented statewide coalition to spur action on a range of issues, including housing (see below), homelessness, high taxes and onerous regulation, that have gone unaddressed for too long, threaten the state’s ability to compete economically and are fueling a flight of jobs and investment. To engage in the Council’s economic competitiveness initiative, please contact Chief Operating Officer John Grubb.

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