Citrus county jobs rate continues slipping

Citrus County continues to hold onto the worst employment rate in the state of Florida, sharing that position with Sumter County.

The state Department of Economic Opportunity on Friday reported that both counties’ unemployment rate slipped from 6.0 percent in January to 5.5 percent in February.

Statewide, Florida’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 3.9 percent in February 2018, unchanged from the January 018 rate, but down 0.6 percentage point from a year ago.  There were 398,000 jobless Floridians out of a labor force of 10,176,000.  The U.S. unemployment rate was 4.1 percent in February.

In counties neighboring Citrus County, Levy County posted a 4.0 percent during February, Hernando County was at 4.8 percent and Marion County was at 4.6 percent during February.

Florida’s seasonally adjusted total nonagricultural employment was 8,699,400 in February 018, an increase of 26,700 jobs (+0.3 percent) over the month.  The state gained 167,800 jobs over the year, an increase of 2.0 percent.  Nationally, the number of jobs rose 1.6 percent over the year.  Prior to September 2017, Florida’s over‐the‐year job growth rate had exceeded or equaled the nation’s rate since May 2012.

Florida’s Nonagricultural Employment by Industry (Seasonally Adjusted)

  • The number of jobs in Florida was 8,699,400 in February 2018, up 167,800 jobs compared to a year ago.  The industry gaining the most jobs was professional and business services (+46,900 jobs, +3.6 percent).
  • Other industries gaining jobs over the year included construction (+31,700 jobs, +6.3 percent); leisure and hospitality (+25,600 jobs, +2.1 percent); education and health services (+18,500 jobs, +1.5 percent); financial activities (+15,300 jobs, +2.7 percent); trade, transportation, and utilities (+14,900 jobs, +0.9 percent); manufacturing (+7,800 jobs, +2.2 percent); government (+6,200 jobs, +0.6 percent); and other services (+2,500 jobs, +0.7 percent).
  • The only industry losing jobs was information (‐1,500 jobs, ‐1.1 percent).

Local Area Unemployment Statistics (Not Seasonally Adjusted)

  • In February 2018, St. Johns County had the state’s lowest unemployment rate (3.0 percent); followed by Okaloosa County (3.2 percent); and Monroe, Orange, Seminole, Union, and Wakulla counties(3.3 percent each).
  • Citrus and Sumter counties had the highest unemployment rate (5.5 percent each) in Florida in February 2018, followed by Hendry County (5.2 percent); and Highlands and Putnam counties (5.1 percent each).

Area Nonagricultural Employment (Not Seasonally Adjusted)

  • In February 2018, 20 out of 24 metro areas in Florida had over‐the‐year job gains.  The areas with the largest ains were Orlando‐Kissimmee‐Sanford (+43,800 jobs, +3.5 percent), Tampa‐St. Petersburg‐Clearwater (+30,600jobs, +2.3 percent), and Jacksonville (+18,600 jobs, +2.7 percent).
  • The three metro areas losing the most jobs over the year were Naples‐Immokalee‐Marco Island (‐4,300 jobs,  ‐2.9 percent); Palm Bay‐Melbourne‐Titusville (‐1,300 jobs, ‐0.6 percent); and Sebring (‐800 jobs, ‐3.0 percent).


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