JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -

After several consecutive months of improvement, Florida's unemployment rate is no longer dropping.
    
The state's jobless rate in February was 6.2 percent, which is the same rate it was the two previous months. 

The same trend was true in many Northeast Florida counties, although Duval, Flagler and Putnam counties ticked up one-tenth of a point in February over January's rate. Columbia and Nassau counties improved by the same fraction. (County-by-county breakdown at bottom of this article.)

The unemployment rate held steady even though the state gained an estimated 33,400 jobs last month. Only California and Texas gained more jobs in February.
    
Gov. Rick Scott stressed the job gains on Friday, saying the latest numbers continue to show that businesses are growing in the state. Scott maintains his policies since becoming governor in 2011 have helped the state's economy recover.

“The addition of 19,800 new jobs over the year and an unemployment drop to 6.1 percent in Jacksonville means thousands more have found work and can provide for their families," Scott said.
    
But state economists have said a big reason for the unemployment rate decline is that people are leaving the labor force or had delayed their job search.

February 2014 January 2014 February 2013  
Alachua County5.0%5.0%5.7%
Baker County5.6%6.0%7.8%
Bradford County 5.2%5.2.%6.3%
Clay County5.7%5.7%6.9%
Columbia County 6.3%6.4%7.1%
Duval County6.5%6.4%7.1%
Flagler County9.4%9.3%11.0%
Nassau County5.5%5.6%7.0%
Putnam County  8.6%8.5%10.4%
St. Johns County   5.2%5.2%6.2%
Union County5.6%5.7%6.5%