Jobless rate shows sharp improvement
Franklin County’s unemployment rate improved markedly last month, dropping by 3 percentage points as the labor force grew in size and the jobless rolls shrank.
According to preliminary numbers released Friday by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, the seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 6.5 percent in June, down 3 percentage points from the revised May rate of 9.5 percent.
The drop in unemployment was in concert with 123 people leaving the unemployment line, which now numbers 277.
The labor force grew by 49 workers, from 4,204 in May to 4,253 last month. The workforce remains significantly smaller than one year ago, when it was at 4,909, the jobless rolls were smaller at 166, and the unemployment rate, at 3.4 percent, was about half of what it is today.
The unemployment rate in Gulf County last month was worse than it is here, at 7.0 percent, as was Bay County, at 7.1 percent. In Liberty County the jobless rate stood at 6.1 percent
Florida’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate dropped 3.3 percentage points in June, to 10.4 percent, still rose than the 7.2 percentage point rate from a year ago. There were 1.02 million jobless Floridians out of a labor force of 9.8 million. The U.S. unemployment rate was 11.1 percent in June.
Florida’s seasonally adjusted total nonagricultural employment was 8.4 million in June, an increase of 296,000 jobs, or 3.7 percent, over the month. The state lost 541,800 jobs over the year, a decrease of 6.1 percent.
Nationally, the number of jobs fell 8.6 percent over the year. June labor statistics reflect the continued effects of COVID-19 and the efforts to reopen businesses and services.
Franklin’s unemployment rate, tied with Santa Rosa County, was higher than just nine other counties, which saw Okaloosa at 6.4 percent; Baker 6.2; Liberty 6.1, DeSoto, Gilchrist and Wakulla each at 5.9, Union 5.6; and Lafayette County, best in the state, at 4.9 percent.