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Saturday, May 27, 2023

February’s unemployment rate holds steady at 3.3% as region adds more jobs

The unemployment rate in the CareerSource Citrus Levy Marion region held steady at 3.3% in February, unchanged from the previous month and 0.7 percentage points lower than the region’s rate from a year ago.

According to preliminary employment data that was released on Friday by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, a total of 210,351 individuals were employed across the three-county region in February, which is an increase of nearly 6,800 compared to the same time last year.

Levy County continued to post the lowest unemployment rate in the region at 3.0%, a drop of 0.1 percentage point over the month and a full percentage point lower than the previous February’s rate.

The unemployment rate in Marion County was 3.1%, a decrease of 0.1 percentage point from January and 0.7 percentage points lower than a year ago. Citrus County’s rate of 3.8% also fell by 0.1 percentage point from a month ago and dropped by 0.8 percentage points compared to February 2022.

Across the state of Florida, jobless rates remained unchanged over the month in 37 counties, decreased in 25 counties, and rose slightly in the remaining five counties. The unemployment rates dropped in all 67 counties compared to a year ago.

“Today’s report shows the continued strength in our area’s economy as reflected by its employment growth: steady,” stated Rusty Skinner, CareerSource CLM’s chief executive officer.

In the Ocala Metropolitan Area, which covers all of Marion County, non-agricultural employment was 119,100, an increase of 3,900 jobs (+3.4%) over the year. Additionally, multiple industries grew faster in the Ocala metro area than statewide over the year, including government (+6.1%); other services (+6.1%); financial activities (+4.8%); professional and business services (+4.6%); and mining, logging, and construction (+3.2%).

A total of 35,400 jobs were posted last month in the Homosassa Springs Metro Area, which includes all of Citrus County. This is an increase of 1,000 jobs (+2.9%) over the year.

As many students prepare for graduation, Skinner noted that employers will have an opportunity to grow their companies or fill vacancies by hiring these newly available job seekers. “CareerSource CLM will be holding a series of hiring events over the next few months, in collaboration with our three school districts, that will highlight their talented graduates.”

CareerSource CLM will host the following job fairs for individuals between the ages of 16 and 24:

  • Marion County Youth Job Fair in Ocala on Thursday, April 27.
  • Levy County Youth Job Fair in Chiefland on Thursday, May 4.

Additional job fairs for general job seekers and senior/mature workers are also planned for July, August, and September across the region.

For more information about job fairs, hiring events, and other candidate and business services, visit the CareerSource Citrus Levy Marion website or call 1-800-434-JOBS (5627).