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According to the Federal Reserve, the unemployment rate 9not seasonally adjusted) for Santa Barbara County dropped to 5.8% as of early November 2020. However, this was just before the number of Covid cases in the area spiked after the Thanksgiving holiday, resulting in the closure of many restaurants and other businesses.
The rate had reached a high of 13.9% in April 2020, and has steadily declined as businesses learned to adapt to the pandemic, and the infection rate appeared to be slowly decreasing. In early December, both the number of Covid cases and deaths from Covid jumped rapidly, a result of people traveling and getting together for the holidays. The death rate from Covid continued to increase, even after the start of the year.