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Florida jobless rate up slightly in January

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Florida’s unemployment rate increased slightly as Gov. Ron DeSantis assumed office, ticking up 0.1 percentage point from December to January, according to numbers released Monday by the state Department of Economic Opportunity.

The preliminary figures estimated that 352,000 Floridians were out of work in January from a workforce of 10.3 million, which represents a 3.4 percent unemployment rate.

The estimate projected that 7,000 more people were out of work in January when compared to December. The national unemployment rate was 4 percent in January.

February numbers for Florida will be released March 22.

The January figures in Florida were bolstered by annual growth in the categories of professional and business services, education and health services, transportation and utilities, construction and hospitality jobs.

The 3.4 percent statewide rate was seasonally adjusted, while a non-seasonally adjusted rate was 3.9 percent.

The state also released county unemployment rates for January that were not seasonally adjusted.

Monroe County, which includes the Florida Keys, had the lowest rate, at 2.8 percent, followed by St. Johns and Okaloosa counties, both at 3.4 percent.

Nassau County's unemployment rate was 3.7 percent, Clay County's was 3.8 percent, Duval County's was 3.9 percent and Flagler County's was 4.5 percent.

Orange and Seminole counties were at 3.5 percent. At the other end of the spectrum, Gulf County, still reeling from Hurricane Michael, had the highest unemployment rate, 7.4 percent, followed by its Gulf Coast neighbor Bay County at 6 percent.