California Has Nation’s Highest Unemployment Rate

California’s latest jobs report released Friday indicates that the Golden State has the highest unemployment rate in the U.S. and has one-third of America’s unemployed population.

The September report from the California Employment Development Department said that the state had an unemployment rate of 7.5 percent, tied with Nevada for the nation’s highest. California added 47,000 jobs since August. New unemployment claims filed last week in the state rose to 80,700, accounting for one-third of all such claims nationwide.

Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom tried to put a good spin on the report, claiming that California’s problems are due to COVID-19 and that the state is “averaging record job creation.” He stated that California is experiencing “promising progress” in its economic recovery, claiming that 63% of new jobs added this year have initially been “lost to the pandemic.” 

Although the jobs report indicates any economic recovery is struggling, Newsom has claimed multiple times since the beginning of summer that California is “roaring back.”

According to a study by the Hoover Institution, at least 265 companies have moved their corporate headquarters out of California since 2018, with 74 moving away in just the first sixth months of this year. In all of 2019, 78 relocated away from the state. 

The businesses leaving in record numbers are spread across multiple industries, including financial services, manufacturing, real estate, technology, and health care. Start-ups, as well as older tech giants like Hewlett-Packard and Oracle, have decided to move away. The study indicates that the essential factor for companies that leave is financial stress caused by the costs of labor, taxation, and regulation. It is also difficult for businesses to attract and retain workers who have become dissatisfied with the quality of life and expenses involved in living in California.

Since 2018, 114 of the companies that have moved away from California have relocated to Texas. Republican Texas Governor Greg Abbott said that his state led the nation in new job creation, adding almost twice as many jobs as California for the month.