[UPDATE] Florida Unemployment Drops to 11.5 Percent

By: Governor's Press Office; AP
By: Governor's Press Office; AP

Tallahassee, Fla. – March 25, 2011 --

Governor Rick Scott today released the following statement regarding the announcement of Florida’s February unemployment rate.

“The dip in the number of Floridians who are out of work is an encouraging sign and cause for guarded optimism. However, 11.5 percent unemployment is still unacceptable because more than one million Floridians need jobs. That is why I remain focused on making Florida the best place to start or grow a business,” Gov. Scott says.

Florida’s February Employment Figures Released
AWI Release

TALLAHASSEE – Florida’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in February 2011 is 11.5 percent, down 0.4 percentage point from the January 2011 rate of 11.9 percent. This represents 1,068,000 jobless out of a labor force of 9,265,000.

Florida’s total nonagricultural employment in February 2011 is 7,184,200, an increase of 22,700 jobs (+0.3 percent) from January 2011. On an annual basis, the number of jobs in the state is up 32,700, an increase of 0.5 percent from February 2010. This is the strongest annual growth rate in Florida since May 2007 when the rate was 0.7 percent over the year.

“This decrease in Florida’s unemployment rate, combined with continued job growth, is welcome news and provides additional evidence that our economy is getting back on track,” said Agency for Workforce Innovation Director Cynthia R. Lorenzo. “We will continue our commitment to ensuring Florida’s workforce system meets the dynamic needs of our existing and future employers so that we can build on this momentum. With Governor Scott’s leadership, Florida is positioned to be the national model for job creation.”

Manpower Employment Outlook

The Manpower Employment Outlook Survey for the second quarter of 2011 indicates Florida employers expect to hire at a steady pace in the months ahead. Of employers surveyed, 14 percent plan to hire more workers between April and June, while 76 percent plan to maintain their current staff levels, a slight improvement over the survey results for the first quarter of the year.

Florida’s Nonagricultural Employment by Industry (Seasonally Adjusted)

· The number of jobs in Florida is 7,184,200 in February 2011, up 32,700 jobs compared to a year ago. February is the fifth consecutive month with positive annual job growth since the state started losing jobs in July 2007. The industry gaining the most jobs is leisure and hospitality (+26,100 jobs, +2.9 percent).

· Other industries gaining jobs include education and health services (+23,600 jobs, +2.2 percent); professional and business services (+9,800 jobs, +1.0 percent); trade, transportation, and utilities (+4,300 jobs, +0.3 percent); and other services (+1,300 jobs, +0.4 percent).

· These industry job gains are partially due to increases in food services and drinking places; ambulatory health care services; employment services; motor vehicle and parts dealers; and repair and maintenance.

· Industries losing jobs over the year include: construction (-15,800 jobs, -4.5 percent); financial activities (-8,000 jobs, -1.7 percent); manufacturing (-5,600 jobs, -1.8 percent); information (-2,300 jobs, -1.7 percent); and total government (-900 jobs, -0.1 percent).

· These industry job losses are partially due to weakness in specialty trade contractors; credit intermediation and related activities and insurance carriers and related activities; miscellaneous durable goods manufacturing; publishing; and federal government.

Local Area Unemployment Statistics (Not Seasonally Adjusted)

· In February 2011, Monroe County has the state’s lowest unemployment rate (6.9 percent), followed by Liberty County (7.1 percent); Alachua County (7.7 percent); Leon and Wakulla counties (7.9 percent each); and Okaloosa County (8.1 percent). Most of the counties with the lowest unemployment rates are those with relatively high proportions of government employment.

· Flagler County has the highest unemployment rate (14.9 percent) in Florida in February 2011, followed by Hernando County (13.9 percent); Hendry County (13.4 percent); Marion County (13.2 percent); and St. Lucie County (13.0 percent). Flagler County, as well as most of the other areas with the highest unemployment rates, continues to suffer long-term job losses, mainly in construction. There are 43 Florida counties with double-digit unemployment rates in February, down from 52 in January.

Area Nonagricultural Employment (Not Seasonally Adjusted)

· Fourteen metro areas of the 22 in the state have over-the-year job gains in February 2011. The areas with the largest gains are Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford (+22,900 jobs, +2.3 percent), Miami-Miami Beach-Kendall (+9,400 jobs, +1.0 percent), and Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater (+6,300 jobs, +0.6 percent).

· Of the metro areas with job declines, the areas with the largest losses are Cape Coral-Ft. Myers
(-3,000 jobs, -1.5 percent), Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville (-2,000 jobs, -1.0 percent), Sebastian-Vero Beach (-1,100 jobs, -2.5 percent), and Ocala (-1,000 jobs, -1.1 percent).


TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) March 25, 2011 --

Florida's February unemployment rate was 11.5 percent, a drop of 0.4 points from the January jobless rate.

According to figures the Agency for Workforce Innovation
released Friday, Florida added 22,700 jobs in February and now has
32,700 more jobs than it did in February 2010. Nearly 1.1 million
Floridians remain jobless.

Monroe County has the state's lowest unemployment rate at 6.9
percent, followed by Liberty County at 7.1 percent and Alachua
County at 7.7 percent.

Flagler County had the highest unemployment rate at 14.9
percent, followed by Hernando County at 13.9 percent and Hendry
County at 13.4 percent.

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