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Jobless rate increases to 12.6% in Manteca
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Some 3,500 Manteca residents were out of work in December.

It represented 200 more people looking for work than in November prompting a rise in the Manteca unemployment rate to 12.6 percent.

The October number follows the previous month when the jobless rate dropped below 12 percent to 11.7 percent for the first time since August 2008.

The number of Manteca residents employed increased by 100 to 24,400, though, in the Economic Development Department jobs data released on Friday.

It’s been 62 months since the unemployment rate in Manteca was below 10 percent. From 1990 to 2005, Manteca’s jobless rate hovered between 6.5 and 7.5 percent.

Manteca’s highest jobless benchmark was 15.8 percent in 2010 for the highest level since the Great Depression.

San Joaquin County’s overall jobless rate in December was 14.5 percent. That reflects 258,400 people working and 43,800 people – the combined population of Ripon, Lathrop, and Escalon – looking for jobs.

The jobless rate in December for Ripon was 10.1 percent, in Lathrop it was at 11.7 percent, in Escalon it was at 13.3 percent, in Tracy it was at 9.1 percent, in Stockton it was 17.5 percent, and in Lodi it was at 11.0 percent.

California’s jobless rate remained at 9.8 percent in December, the same rate as in November, the state Employment Development Department said Friday, holding steady after dropping below 10 percent in November for the first time since the beginning of the recession.

EDD said 1.8 million Californians were unemployed in December, slightly below the previous month but down by 255,000 since December of 2011. The unemployment rate then was 11.2 percent.

The department said construction, information, and educational and health services fields showed the biggest job gains between November and December.

Still, the department’s surveys showed that nonfarm payroll jobs decreased by 17,500 during December, demonstrating the continued volatility in the labor market, said economist Steven Levy of the Center for the Continuing Study of the California Economy.

Mining and logging, manufacturing, government and other services have continued to see falling job numbers over the last year, losing more than 51,000 jobs, the state report said. Government lost the highest number of jobs, about 31,500 in the last year.