Nearly 74,000 payroll jobs were lost in the county between December and January, a huge dropoff that was seen in most segments of the local economy, from trade to retail to education and health services. Between January 2009 and January 2010, 176,500 jobs were lost, or 4.5 percent of the workforce. The month-to-month losses are especially high, though the Employment Development Department has had problems today releasing detailed information. Meanwhile, the county unemployment rate is 12.5 percent, up from a revised 12.3 percent in December. California's jobless rate in January was also 12.5 percent.
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