Business & Real Estate

California unemployment falls to 5.4 percent

California’s unemployment rate fell to 5.4 percent in March despite tepid payroll job growth, state officials said Friday. It’s the lowest unemployment rate since July 2007.

The Employment Development Department said the statewide unemployment rate dropped a tenth of a percentage point compared with February. Nonfarm payroll jobs grew by a relatively small 4,200 jobs, however.

Sacramento’s unemployment rate was unchanged at 5.4 percent in March, despite an increase of 4,600 payroll jobs. The four-county region has gained 21,800 jobs in the past year, a 2.4 percent increase.

Dale Kasler: 916-321-1066, @dakasler