Alabama, Florida unemployment rates for May

FILE -  In this Thursday, May 30, 2013, photo, a job seeker stops at a table offering resume critiques during a job fair held in Atlanta. The Labor Department releases weekly jobless claims on Thursday, Feb. 27, 2014. (AP Photo/John Amis, File)
FILE - In this Thursday, May 30, 2013, photo, a job seeker stops at a table offering resume critiques during a job fair held in Atlanta. The Labor Department releases weekly jobless claims on Thursday, Feb. 27, 2014. (AP Photo/John Amis, File)

(AP) – Alabama’s unemployment rate dipped slightly in May, but it was higher than the same month a year ago.

Gov. Robert Bentley reported Friday that Alabama measured 6.8 percent unemployment. That’s down from 6.9 percent in April, but it is above the 6.4 percent recorded in May 2013.

The seasonally adjusted statistics show there were slightly more than 147,000 Alabamians looking for work in May. That’s down about 160 people from the previous months, but it’s about 8,600 more than a year ago.

Counties with the lowest unemployment rates were Shelby at 4.4 percent, Lee at 4.8 percent and Cullman and Baldwin counties at 5.1 percent. The counties with the highest rates were Wilcox at 15.6 percent, Dallas at 12.1 percent and Lowndes at 11.9 percent.

Also, Florida’s unemployment rate is edging up slightly.

New numbers released Friday show that the state’s unemployment rate in May was 6.3 percent. That’s slightly higher than April figure and for the first time in many months the state’s jobless rate matches the national jobless rate.

There are roughly 606,000 jobless Floridians.

The bump in the rate is not totally unexpected. Economists had expected it to grow slightly as more people start seeking work as the economic recovery continues.

But Florida also lost nearly 18,000 jobs last month.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics said that was the steepest drop in jobs in the nation.

Gov. Rick Scott has made job creation a main point in his re-election campaign.

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