(Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)
(Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

California’s unemployment rate dropped 0.4 percent to 9.0 percent in April, according to the state’s Employment Development Department.

The unemployment rate in San Francisco, Marin and San Mateo counties was listed at 5.1 percent, down from 6.8 percent a year ago.

But the overall job picture remains mixed, as there were also signs that new job creation is slowing across almost all sectors, according to data released Friday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The main driver behind the state’s job growth in April would appear to be the construction industry, as new jobs in construction (7,400) accounted for more than 70 percent of the statewide increase in nonfarm jobs (10,400), according to the EDD.

In the Bay Area, professional and business services reached the highest job level for April on record, with computer systems design accounting for over a third of the job growth during the past year.

When it comes to that end of the job market, the professional staffing firm Robert Half issued a report stating that hiring those with specialized skill sets is becoming more difficult. According to the report, a number of trends are affecting this part of the employment picture in the state:

More Workers Are Quitting Their Jobs – Almost 2.2 million professionals voluntarily left their jobs in March 2013, close to a 19 percent increase from two years ago.

Employee Confidence Is Rising – More job opportunities are making professionals increasingly selective when evaluating offers.

Salaries Are Increasing – Starting salaries for professionals are projected to rise 3.7 percent in 2013, and 72 percent of employers plan to raise salaries for their current workers this year.

State Unemployment Rate Dips to 9 Percent 7 May,2014KQED News Staff and Wires

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