A new report by personal finance website WalletHub finds that the Modesto area, which includes Turlock, is the worst geographical place to start a career amongst the nation’s 150 largest cities.
Yep, 150th out of 150. Last place.
Other Central Valley cities on the list, “Best and Worst Cities to Start a Career,” include Sacramento (91st), Fresno (134th), and Stockton (148th).
In contrast, California’s coastal cities faired well in the report: San Francisco (6th), Oakland (19th), San Diego (30th), Fremont (33rd), Los Angeles (34th), Irvine (41st), amd San Jose (44th) all placed in the top 50.
WalletHub reports that U.S. Census data strongly indicates simple geography can help graduates of the class of 2014 figure out where to find the best area for their careers. The report surveys the relative strength of job markets, professional opportunities and quality of life.
The methodology includes weighing the number of entry-level jobs per 100,000 residents, median starting salary, tech jobs as a percentage of total employment, annual job growth, median income growth rate, unemployment rate and entrepreneurial activity. The quality of life metric considers average annual income, percentage of population aged 25 to 34, housing cost and leisure establishments.
Nationwide the the effective unemployment rate for Americans ages 18 to 29 is currently 15.5%.
In the Central Valley, unemployment consistently averages higher than most of the state and country. That unemployment compounds the lack of local job opportunities for youth and college graduates with little-to-no work experience.
The overall unemployment rate in Stanislaus County was 13.6 percent in March, compared to 8.4 percent for the state. In Merced County it was 16.3 percent and in San Joaquin it was 13.1 percent.
The national unemployment rate was 6.8 percent.