MANATEE -- Manatee County's unemployment figures for May stayed somewhat flat compared to April, according to the latest job numbers released Friday.
The county's unemployment rate increased to 5.7 percent in May from 5.2 percent in April, according to numbers released by CareerSource Suncoast, the region's job agency.
The county did see a significant improvement year-over-year, decreasing from 7 percent unemployment in May 2013.
Sarasota County also saw 5.7 percent unemployment, up from 5.4 percent in April and down from 6.9 percent the previous year.
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Those figures are better than the state and national average of 6.1 percent for May. Those rates are not seasonally adjusted.
Seasonally adjusted rates show Florida's unemployment rate is edging up slightly.
Numbers released Friday show that the state's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in May was 6.3 percent. That's slightly higher than the April figure and for the first time in many months the state's jobless rate matches the national jobless rate.
There are roughly 606,000 jobless Floridians.
The bump in the rate is not totally unexpected. Economists had expected it to grow slightly as more people start seeking work as the economic recovery continues.
But Florida also lost nearly 18,000 jobs last month. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics said that was the steepest drop in jobs in the nation.
Gov. Rick Scott has made job creation a main point in his re-election campaign.
The Bradenton-Sarasota-North Port metro area gained 9,500 jobs over the year, led by professional and business services, which added 3,000 jobs to the market, according to CareerSource. That same industry led over-the-year growth rates at 8.4 percent.
The metro area also had the second strongest annual job growth rate for total nonagricultural unemployment behind Naples and second for trade, transportation and utilities, behind Ft. Lauderdale-Pompano-Deerfield Beach.
Material from the Associated Press was included in this story.Charles Schelle, Herald business reporter, can be reached at 941-745-7095. Follow him on Twitterclrtxt xmlns:saxo="http://ns.saxotech.com/SaxoInDesign/2.0/" val="-1" cls="533808"/>