Jacksonville’s unemployment rate was stable in February with job growth surging in the area, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity reported March 24.
The jobless rate in the Jacksonville metropolitan area of Baker, Clay, Duval, Nassau and St. Johns counties was unchanged from January at 2.5%.
The Department of Economic Opportunity reported nearly 10,000 more people in February joined the labor force, which consists of people with jobs or actively looking for work.
Most of those people were able to find jobs, as the number of employed also grew by nearly 10,000 to 834,055.
The economic agency also said non-farm businesses added a net total of 42,800 jobs from February 2022 through February 2023, a 5.6% growth rate.
The jobs gains were widespread with every industry sector but one reporting an increase in the 12-month period.
The one exception was the small sector of mining and logging, which was unchanged with 400 jobs.
Duval County’s unemployment was unchanged at 2.6% last month, while the other four counties in the metropolitan area had some of the lowest jobless rates in the state.
St. Johns County’s 2.2% unemployment rate was tied for third-lowest among Florida’s 67 counties behind only Monroe County at 1.6% and Miami-Dade at 1.7%.
Baker, Clay and Nassau were all not far behind at 2.4% each.
However, two counties close to Jacksonville but not part of the metro area had some of the highest unemployment rates in Florida.
Hamilton and Putnam counties were both at 3.6%, slightly lower than Highlands, Citrus and Sumter, all at 3.8%, and Hendry County at 3.7%.
Florida’s statewide unemployment rate was unchanged last month at a seasonally adjusted 2.6%.