The unemployment rate in the CareerSource Citrus Levy Marion region was 3.1% in May, which is 2 percentage points lower than the region’s rate a year ago.
Across the three-county region, the labor force in May 2022 was 209,108, up 2,790 for an increase of 1.4% over the year. There were 6,436 unemployed residents in the region and 202,672 employed – the most people with jobs in May in the last five years; and 7,495 more than in February 2020, prior to the start of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The region’s employment numbers in May are the strongest that they have been since 2007 when the labor force was 209,106, there were 200,612 employed, and 8,494 were unemployed.
According to the preliminary employment numbers that were recently released by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, Levy County continued to hold the lowest unemployment rate (2.8%) in the region, followed by Marion County (3.0%) and Citrus County (3.5%). The rates in all three counties rose by 0.2 percentage points.
Dale French, CareerSource CLM’s executive vice president, said, “While we continue to see historically low unemployment numbers, area businesses are growing and hiring and training at a very fast rate.”
French said one of the ways CareerSource CLM can help is to bring available talent together through job fairs, such as the Citrus County Job Fair which is scheduled on Tuesday, June 21 from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m. at the College of Central Florida’s Citrus Campus in Lecanto.
“The job fair may take place in Citrus County, but it is open to any job seeker in our region and features 20 area businesses, all with multiple jobs to fill. Our job fairs are offered at no charge. We also have a Healthcare and Human Services Job Fair planned for July 19 in Ocala. So, there are lots of opportunities for anyone seeking good, gainful employment,” added French.
Non-agricultural employment in the Ocala metropolitan statistical area, which covers all of Marion County, was 112,600 in May, an increase of 2,900 jobs over the year for a 2.6% annual growth rate.
Compared to all the metros across the state, the Ocala MSA posted the second fastest annual job growth rate in the information industry at 20%.
In addition to the information industry, the following industries gained jobs in the Ocala MSA: trade, transportation, and utilities (+1,000 jobs); education and health services (+600 jobs); Leisure and hospitality (+600 jobs); mining, logging, and construction (+400 jobs); professional and business services (+200 jobs); information (+100 jobs); and financial activities (+100 jobs).
The government industry lost jobs compared to May 2021 (-100 jobs). The manufacturing and other services industries were unchanged in jobs when compared to a year ago.