Lucas County’s unemployment rate held steady from April to May at 5.7 percent, state officials said Tuesday. The unemployment rate within the city of Toledo was also unchanged, at 6.2 percent.
The figures come from the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services, which provides estimates for all 88 counties and a handful of major cities.
Toledo and Lucas County’s May unemployment rates are significantly lower than they were in 2013.
The state said Lucas County‘s unemployment rate a year ago was 8.2 percent, while Toledo’s was 8.9 percent.
Because the data are not seasonally adjusted, experts say year-over-year comparisons tell a more accurate story than month-to-month changes.
The data show that Lucas County added 1,900 jobs over the last 12 months, 1,200 of which were in the city of Toledo.
However, the number of people participating in the area’s labor force is falling at a rate that outpaces the job growth. Ohio Department of Job and Family services data show Lucas County’s labor force contracted by 3,600 people over the last year.
Only people who are actively looking for a job are counted as being unemployed.
But both the labor force and the number of people employed in the city and county rose from April to May, according to the state‘s estimates.
Ottawa County, which relies heavily on jobs tied to tourism, had the biggest drop from April to May.
The unemployment rate there fell to 5.6 percent in May from 7.4 in April.
A year ago in May, the unemployment rate was 7.9 percent.
Fulton County’s rate also dropped in May to 5.1 percent from 5.7 percent in April. A year ago Fulton County’s unemployment rate was 7.5 percent.
Wood County’s rate was unchanged from April to May at 4.9 percent. A year ago in May, the county’s unemployment rate was an estimated 7.1 percent.
The statewide unemployment rate was 5.5 percent in May, Ohio officials said on Friday, down from 5.7 percent in April.
That rate, which is seasonally adjusted, was the lowest in seven years. However, much of the decline was because of people dropping out of the labor force.