Contact: Laura Byrnes, APR, CPRC
352-291-5999 | 352-816-1264
OCALA (Aug. 17, 2018) – The unemployment rate in the CareerSource Citrus Levy Marion region was 4.9 percent in July, the same as it was in June, but 0.4 percentage point lower than the region’s rate of 5.3 percent a year ago.
The labor force was 201,458, up 2,473 over the year, employment increased by 3,150 to 191,532 and there were 9,926 unemployed, 677 fewer than July 2017.
According to today’s release of the July employment summary by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, Levy County continues to hold the lowest jobless rate in the region at 4.3 percent, followed by Marion County with 4.7 percent, and Citrus County at 5.7 percent. Florida’s not seasonally adjusted jobless rate – a measure that matches the way local rates are calculated – is 4.0 percent, an increase of 0.1 percentage point over the month.
For the fifth consecutive month, the Ocala/Marion County metropolitan statistical area had the fastest annual job growth rate compared to all other metro areas in the state in education and health services, at 7.1 percent. The Ocala MSA had the third fastest annual job growth rate compared to other metros in manufacturing, at 7.2 percent.
CareerSource CLM’s CEO Rusty Skinner said that once again the report reflects “mixed movement” for each county in the area. Skinner stressed that the monthly fluctuations, which are not seasonally adjusted “tend to not reflect employment and labor force strength.”
“Each county has shown positive labor force and employment growth since July 2017,” he said. “This long-term picture is also reflected in the tightness of the labor market, with openings exceeding job candidates.”
Marion County’s labor force grew by 545 over the month to 137,082, the number of those with jobs increased by 482 to 130,587, and the number of unemployed fell by 63 to 6,495. Compared to July 2017, when the unemployment rate was 5.1 percent, the labor force has grown by 2,392, the number of employed has increased by 2,833 and the number of unemployed has dropped by 441.
Citrus County experienced shrinkage of its labor force by 1,011 to 47,515 and a decrease in the number of employed by 991 to 44,802, while the number of unemployed fell by 20 to 2,713. Compared to July 2017, when the jobless rate was 6.1 percent, that’s an increase of 200 with jobs and a decrease of 180 unemployed.
Levy County’s labor force expanded by 44 over the month to 16,861, the number of those with jobs rose by 33 to 16,143 and the number of unemployed decreased by 11 to 718. That’s an over-the-year increase of 117 in the number of employed and drop of 56 in the number of jobless when the unemployment rate was 4.6 percent.
According to the employment data for July, unemployment rates rose in all 37 counties, dropped in 11 and remained the same in 19.
Citrus County’s dropped a notch from the third highest unemployment rate to the fourth highest among Florida’s counties, Marion County fell two spots for the 14th highest and Levy County tied with six other counties to hold at the 23rd highest rate.
Among the metro areas, the Homosassa Springs/Citrus County MSA had the second highest rate behind the Sebring MSA’s 5.8 percent and the Ocala MSA tied with the Port St. Lucie MSA with the fifth highest rate.
Nonfarm employment in the Ocala/Marion County metropolitan statistical area was 103,900, an increase of 100 jobs over the month and 2,800 jobs over the year for a 2.8 percent growth rate.
The Ocala MSA, which led the state’s metros with the fastest annual job growth rate in education and health services, posted 19,700 jobs in education and health services, an increase of 100 jobs over the month and 1,300 more than in July 2017.
Manufacturing, which held the third fastest job growth rate, posted 600 new jobs over the year.
Both industry sectors grew faster in the metro area than statewide over the year. So did professional and business services (200 new jobs for an increase of 2.2 percent); trade, transportation and utilities (+400 jobs for a 1.7 percent increase); and government (+100 jobs for a 0.7 percent increase).
Leisure and hospitality also gained 500 jobs over the year.
Industries losing jobs over the year were mining, logging and construction (-200), and other services (-100 jobs).
Information and financial activities industries were unchanged over the year.
Nonfarm payroll employment in the Homosassa Springs MSA was 32,400, down 1,400 jobs over the month but an increase of 200 jobs (+0.6 percent) compared to July 2017.
The Homosassa Springs MSA had the second fastest annual job growth rate compared to all other Florida metros in government at 3.1 percent.
The region’s employment summary for August will be released on Friday, Sept. 21.
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