The August rate of 11.0 percent is down from 11.2 percent the previous month. But overall it wasn't a very strong August, considering that the separate payroll survey showed a drop of 10,400 jobs (much of that related to a loss of government jobs due to the summer recess). Construction was up a little and manufacturing was down a little. The big gainer was the entertainment business, which picked up 6,000 jobs in August, a 4.2 percent increase from a year earlier. Yes, the same entertainment industry that's supposedly leaving L.A. for other cities and states. Actually, movie and television employment is normally quite volatile - and seasonal - and it's not unusual to see month-to-month swings. But it you go back 10 or 15 years you'll see that the range is quite consistent: from the low 120,000s to the high 130,000s. Payroll employment is currently at 132,500 - not too shabby, all things considered. Statewide, the August jobless rate was 10.6 percent, a slight drop from a month earlier, but only 12,000 jobs were added to the rolls.
*Economist Michael Bernick points out that the drop in the state unemployment rate was due mainly to a decline the civilian labor force - much like the national picture.