COLUMBUS, Ohio (WTVN) -- Ohio's unemployment rate dropped in February, according to new numbers from the Ohio Dept. of Job and Family Services.
The seasonally adjusted rate in February was 6.5 percent, which was down from 6.9 percent in January. It's the state's lowest jobless rate since June 2008.
Ohio’s nonfarm wage and salary employment decreased 4,600 over the month, from a revised 5,284,600 in January to 5,280,000 in February. The number of workers unemployed in Ohio in February was 377,000, down 18,000 from 395,000 in January.
The number of unemployed has decreased by 44,000 in the past 12 months from 421,000. The February unemployment rate for Ohio was down from 7.3 percent in February 2013.
There were mixed messages in the two surveys ODJFS uses to come up with the unemployment picture. Spokesman Ben Johnson says the household survey showed more people working or looking for work and fewer people unemployed.
"The other survey is a payroll survey of employers around the state and that survey actually showed fewer total non-farm jobs," Johnson said.
As an example of the volatility between months, Johnson says Ohio added 8,000 construction jobs in January and lost 8,100 construction jobs in February.
"When you look at the year over year numbers, most of the industries in Ohio have added jobs over the last 12 months," he said.
For the first time since last summer, the state's rate has dipped below the national rate which was 6.7 percent in February.
The announcement comes on the heels of a U.S. Department of Labor report saying Ohio had the second-biggest job gains of any state in January, adding 16,700 positions.