October 19, 2021

Press Release

Region feels heat from seasonal rise in jobless rate

| 7/19/2019

OCALA, Fla. (July 19, 2019) – The CareerSource Citrus Levy Marion region, along with most of Florida, experienced a seasonal uptick in the unemployment rate in June.

The jobless rate for the region was 4.4 percent, half a percentage point higher than May but 0.4 percentage point lower than the rate in June 2018. There were 9,068 unemployed in the region, an increase of 1,159 over the month, but 709 fewer than the same time last year.

According to the preliminary employment data released today of employment data by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, the region’s labor force in June was 204,701, up 2,894 or 1.4 percent over the year. There were 195,633 employed in the region, 575 fewer than the previous month but an increase of 3,603 with jobs compared to June 2018.

Levy County continued to hold the lowest unemployment rate at 4.1 percent, up 0.5 percentage point over the month; Marion County’s jobless rate was 4.2 percent, also up 0.5 percentage point; and Citrus County’s rate was 5.2 percent, up 0.6 percent point over the month.

Florida’s not seasonally adjusted rate – a rate that matches how the region’s numbers are measured – was 3.5 percent, and increase of 0.4 percentage point over the month and 0.3 percentage point lower than June 2018.

Kathleen Woodring, CareerSource CLM’s executive vice president, said that the seasonal uptick in unemployment is no cause for alarm.

“This is something we typically see at this time of year, and we’re not alone,” Woodring said. “With virtually no exceptions, every county, every metro area, every workforce region saw unemployment begin to rise in June.”

Sixty-six counties experienced a rate increase over the month, while one county – Miami-Dade – was unchanged. Among the state’s 24 metropolitan statistical areas all but one saw rates rise since May; the Miami-Miami Beach Kendall metropolitan division was unchanged. And rates rose over the month in all 24 of Florida’s workforce development regions.

Woodring noted that historically, unemployment rates rise during the summer due to seasonal factors such as release of school support personnel for the summer as well as college students returning to the area looking for temporary work until they head back to school.

“Based on what we’ve seen happen year after year, we can probably expect to see rates for our region and state spike in July, which we’ll get in next month’s report,” Woodring said. “For our area, we see rates drop back to ‘pre-spike’ numbers or below by September of October.”

Here’s how the employment numbers looked for each county in the region:

Citrus County’s labor force expanded by 62 to 48,666, the number of employed dropped by 223 to 46,157 and the number of unemployed rose by 285 to 2,509. Over the year, when the jobless rate was 5.6 percent, the labor force grew by 308, the number of employed rose by 508 and the number of unemployed fell by 200. 

Levy County’s labor force contracted by 132 to 16,908, the number of those with jobs fell by 222 to 16,201 and the number of unemployed increased by 90 to 698. While the unemployment rate is the same as it was in June 2018, over the year the labor force expanded by 66, there were 65 more employed and one fewer unemployed.

Marion County’s labor force grew by 654 to 139,127, the number of those with jobs decreased by 130 to 133,266 and the number of unemployed increased by 784 to 5,861. Over the year, when the jobless rate was 4.7 percent, the labor force has expanded by 2,520, the number of employed has increased by 3,030 and the number of unemployed has dropped by 510.

Among Florida’s 67 counties, Citrus County dropped from highest to a tie with Sumter County for the third highest rate; Marion County dropped one spot to 13th highest rate, tied Indian River and Madison counties; and Levy County fell to 16thhighest, tied with Calhoun, Flagler, Hamilton, Jackson and Polk counties. The lowest unemployment rate in the state was Monroe County at 2.4 percent.

The Homosassa Springs metropolitan statistical area, which includes all of Citrus County, tied again with The Villages for the highest rate among Florida’s 24 metro areas, while the Ocala MSA, which covers all of Marion County, tied with the Sebastian-Vero Beach metro to hold the fourth highest rate.

Nonfarm employment for the Ocala MSA was 106,600, a drop of 1,000 jobs over the month but an increase of 3,200 jobs (+3.1 percent) over the year.

The Ocala MSA had the second fastest annual job growth rate compared to all metro areas in state government at 2.9 percent (+400 new jobs for a total of 14,300 jobs).

Other industries that grew faster in the Ocala metro area than statewide over the year were: mining, logging and construction at 7.8 percent (+600 new jobs for a total of 8,300 jobs); manufacturing at 4.7 percent (+400 jobs for a total of 9,000 jobs); professional and business services at 4.2 percent (+400 new jobs for a total of 9,900); and leisure and hospitality at 3.1 percent (+400 new jobs for a total of 13,500).

Industries that also gained jobs over the year were education and health services at 4.2 percent (+800 new jobs for a total of 9,900 jobs); and trade, transportation and utilities at 1.2 percent (+300 new jobs for a total of 24,400).

The information industry lost 100 jobs over the year, falling to 700. The financial activities industry was unchanged at 3,900 as was other services at 2,900 jobs.

In June 2019, nonagricultural employment in the Homosassa Springs MSA was 33,900, a drop of 500 jobs over the month but an increase of 700 new jobs over the year (+2.1 percent).

The region’s preliminary job numbers for June will be released on Friday, 16

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