Florida Unemployment Rate Dips Below 5 Percent

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida’s unemployment rate is below 5 percent for the first time in eight years.

The state’s employment agency announced Friday that unemployment in February was 4.9 percent, down 0.2 percent from the revised January rate of 5.1 percent.

There were about 484,000 Floridians without jobs out of a labor force of 9,793,000.

Monroe County had the lowest unemployment rate at 3.1 percent, followed by St. Johns County at 3.5 percent and Lafayette County at 3.9 percent.

Hendry County had the highest unemployment rate at 7.8 percent, followed by Sumter County at 6.8 percent and Citrus County at 6.6 percent.

The number of Florida jobs increased by about 5,900 in February and by more than 243,000 over the previous year.