Orange County's unemployment rate continues to climb upward: The number hit 9.5 percent in July, according to stats from the California Employment Development Department.
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The rate is up from 9.3 percent in June of this year, and above the year-ago estimate of 5.6 percent, says the EDD.
The region lost 7,900 jobs over the month, and between July 2008 and 2009, 68,000 jobs were cut. A glimmer of light came from the leisure and hospitality industry, which grew by 1,100 positions in July as local companies beefed up their staffs for the summer tourist season. Construction also added 200 jobs over the month. Other highlights:
Government showed the largest decrease, cutting 6,400 positions. Though federal government added 300 jobs, state government eliminated 1,800 because of cutbacks in the agency's education programs.
Education and health service positions fell by 1,000, due to a loss of 600 jobs in educational services and 400 in the ambulatory health care sector.
Professional and business services decreased by 900 positions. Management of companies lost 300 positions, and the administrative and support services division chopped 600.
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