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Florida unemployment up in May, still below national rate

Miami-Dade County had the highest unemployment rate at 6.7 percent.
A sign at a Publix supermarket in Richmond, Va., June 2.
A sign at a Publix supermarket in Richmond, Va., June 2. [ STEVE HELBER | AP ]
Published Jun. 18
Updated Jun. 18

TALLAHASSEE — Though Florida unemployment slightly ticked up in May, the rate was far below the previous year and remained lower than the national rate, according to statistics released by the state on Friday.

Unemployment in May was 4.9 percent, or 0.1 percentage point above April’s rate. The federal unemployment rate was 5.8 percent.

Florida’s unemployment rate in May 2020 was 14.2 percent — the highest monthly rate of the year as Florida grappled with the coronavirus pandemic. It began steadily dropping as Gov. Ron DeSantis began lifting restrictions on businesses, bars and restaurants.

Last month, there were 503,000 jobless Floridians out of a workforce of 10.3 million, according to the Department of Economic Opportunity.

Monroe County had the state’s lowest unemployment rate at 3.1 percent, followed by St. Johns County at 3.2 percent and Wakulla County at 3.5 percent.

Miami-Dade County had the highest unemployment rate at 6.7 percent, followed by Hamilton and Osceola counties at 6.6 percent each.