Ed Bedford 6 p.m., March 29
Local Workforce Index Drops
The workforce index compiled by the San Diego Workforce Partnership dropped to 83.98, in January, down from 86.26 in November, which had been the highest in three years. Moving in an unfavorable direction in January were the county unemployment rate, Indeed.com jobs available, first-time filers for unemployment insurance, total nonfarm employment and, temporary employment. Moving in a positive direction were the University of San Diego index of leading indicators and the Conference Board's Pacific Region consumer confidence index. Analyst David Narevsky of the partnership points out that when more people return to the labor force, the unemployment rate normally rises. However, he notes, "Unfortunately, in the last two months we have seen the job market shrink a bit in San Diego." Still, he says, economic reports indicate more future hiring.