The unemployment rate in Kern County dropped to 13.6 percent in May, down from a revised 14.5 percent in April.
The figures, released Friday morning by the Employment Development Department, indicate a slowly-recovering local job market. Jobs were added across most sectors, but some jobs were lost in government and manufacturing.
California posted an unadjusted unemployment rate of 10.4 percent, while it was 7.9 percent for the nation during the same period.
The state's jobless rate had dropped below 11 percent during the first two months of the year, but bounced back up to 11 percent in March.
"A lower rate is always good news, but it just gets us back down where we were in January, February," said Dennis Meyers, an economist for the state Department of Finance. "I think it's kind of symptomatic of this kind of low boil we're on."