Unemployment fell across Florida for the fourth straight month in June, dropping to its lowest rate in a decade.
That’s the good news.
Closer to home, the data for Manatee and Sarasota counties showed a slight uptick last month, though the numbers have yet to be seasonally adjusted for industries such as tourism and agriculture, or student employment.
According to figures released Friday by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, the Sunshine State’s jobless rate was 4.1 percent last month, down from 4.3 percent in May and 4.9 percent in June 2016.
4.1 percentFlorida’s jobless rate in June, down from 4.9 percent a year earlier
The state’s unemployment rate is the lowest since June 2007, when it was 4.0 percent.
Further, Florida’s jobless rate is now below the nationwide rate of 4.4 percent.
Manatee County saw a small jump from 3.6 percent in May to 3.9 percent in June, though it remained well below the 4.4 percent rate from a year earlier.
The numbers were similar in Sarasota County: A 3.9 percent jobless rate in June, up from 3.7 percent in May, but significantly below the 4.6 percent rate in June 2016.
Gov. Rick Scott announced the state figures while in Las Vegas to meet with executives for Allegiant Air, which services seven Florida airports, including St. Pete-Clearwater and Punta Gorda.
“Over the past six and a half years, we have tirelessly worked to cut more than $7 billion in taxes and reduce more than 5,000 burdensome regulations, which is helping job creators like Allegiant Air bring new opportunities to our state,” Scott said in a news release.
Scott also touted that Florida created 18,000 private-sector jobs last month, which pushed the state’s annual private-sector growth rate to 3.1 percent. Florida’s private-sector job growth rate has exceeded the nation’s rate (1.7 percent) for 63 straight months. Overall, Florida added approximately 19,400 jobs in June.
Despite the slight rise in the local jobless numbers, only 11 of Florida’s 67 counties had lower unemployment rates that Manatee and Sarasota in June, including Pinellas, which was at 3.8 percent. Hillsborough was 4.0 percent.
Moreover, of the state’s 24 metropolitan areas, North Port-Sarasota-Bradenton had the second-lowest unemployment rate at 3.9 percent, trailing only Crestview-Fort Walton Beach-Destin (3.4 percent).
Monroe County had the state’s lowest unemployment rate at 2.8 percent, while Hendry County had the highest at 9.4 percent.