Manatee unemployment improves from a year ago, ticks up from May

Region's job numbers ticked upward from May

cschelle@bradenton.comJuly 19, 2014 

MANATEE -- The region's unemployment rate for June inched downward from a year ago, even though it ticked up again from last month, according to the latest job numbers released Friday.

Manatee and Sarasota counties' combined unemployment rate for June was 5.9 percent, down 1.5 percent from a year ago, according to CareerSource Suncoast, the region's jobs agency. However, the region's rate was up slightly from May's 5.7 percent. Those rates are not seasonally adjusted. The April unemployment rate for Manatee County was at 5.2 percent.

The state's unemployment rate is 6.2 percent, which stands as both the seasonally and not seasonally adjusted rates. The national rate is 6.3 percent for seasonally adjusted and 6.1 percent,

which does not account for seasonality.

Gov. Rick Scott announced that Florida created 36,900 private-sector jobs in June, marking the single highest month of private-sector job creation since Scott took office.

"Florida experienced a record-setting month for private-sector job creation in June, with 36,900 new jobs over the month and a total of 620,700 private-sector jobs added since December 2010," Scott said. "This news is great for Florida families, and Florida continues to have great success in our state's economic recovery. Let's keep working so that every person who wants a job can get one here in Florida."

Florida's unemployment rate has declined or been unchanged over the month for 44 of the last 46 months.

"As the trends continue to tell Florida's economic turnaround story, today's announcement adds another important chapter with 36,900 private-sector jobs created and the statewide unemployment rate down to 6.2 percent," said Department of Economic Opportunity Executive Director Jesse Panuccio.

"This economic growth is not happening by chance," he said. "Policy matters, and this administration will keep working to promote the pro-growth policies that are making Florida the best state in the nation in which to live, work, and start or grow a business."

For year-over-year, Manatee County's 6.0 unemployment rate was 1.5 percentage points lower than a year ago, while Sarasota was 1.6 percentage points down from last year's 7.3 percent. June's 6.0 percent was up from the May rate of 5.8 percent.

That's even with an influx of 4,149 people actively looking for jobs in Manatee since June of last year. The county's workforce slightly decreased in June by 695 people.

Sarasota's workforce increased by 4,433 year-over-year, according to the Department of Economic Opportunity.

The biggest job gains in the metro area over the year were 2,900 jobs in professional and business services, followed by 2,400 jobs in education and health services. That growth in education led the state for that industry.

The metro area also had the second strongest annual job growth rate in nonagricultural employment behind Naples-Marco Island.

Charles Schelle, Herald business reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7095. Follow him on Twitter @ImYourChuck.

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