Categories: Brevard County

Florida Unemployment Rate Drops To 7.7%, Brevard 8%

TALLAHASSEE, Florida — Statewide, Florida’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 7.7 percent in February 2013, the lowest since October 2008 when it was 7.4 percent, according to figures released by the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity today.

The February state unemployment rate was down 0.2 percentage point from the revised January rate of 7.9 percent and was 1.3 percentage points lower than the year‐ago rate of 9.0 percent.

There were 729,000 jobless Floridians out of a labor force of 9,427,000. The U.S. February unemployment rate was 7.7 percent. Florida’s unemployment rate was tied with the national rate in February.

Florida’s seasonally adjusted total non-agricultural employment was 7,479,700 in February 2013, an increase of 7,800 jobs (+0.1 percent) over the month. The number of jobs in the state was up 128,100 from February 2012, an increase of 1.7 percent. Nationally, the number of jobs was up 1.5 percent over the year.

Florida’s unemployment rate matched that of the U.S. in February. All numbers released are known as U-3, which consists of total unemployed, as a percent of the civilian labor force

Florida Counties With Lowest Unemployment

In February 2013, Monroe County (4.2 percent) had the state’s lowest unemployment rate, followed by Walton County (5.1 percent), Okaloosa County (5.5 percent), Alachua County (5.6 percent), and St. Johns County (5.8 percent).

Many of the counties with the lowest unemployment rates were those with relatively high proportions of government employment.

Florida Counties With Highest Unemployment

Hendry County had the highest unemployment rate (10.8 percent) in Florida in February 2013, followed by Flagler and Putnam counties (10.3 percent each); St. Lucie County (9.5 percent); and Hamilton and Miami‐Dade counties (9.4 percent each). Hendry’s County had the highest unemployment rate in the state mainly due to long‐term losses in state government. There were three Florida counties with double‐digit unemployment rates in February, down from six in January.

Brevard County Unemplyoment

Brevard County’s unemployment rate dropped to 8.0% in February 2013 from 8.5% in January 2013, but is still significantly higher than that of the Florida statewide unemployment rate of 7.7%. February’s Brevard County unemployment rate is two percentage points lower from a year ago.

In February 2013, total non-agricultural employment in the Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville metro area was 196,900. Total non-agricultural employment increased by 1.3 percent over the year. Statewide employment increased by 1.9 percent over the same time period.

Out of a labor force of 265,099, there were 21,131 unemployed Brevard County residents in February.

Total non-agricultural employment increased by 2,500 jobs over the year in the Palm Bay-Melbourne-Titusville metro area.

Job gains on the Space Coast were led by trade, transportation, and utilities; education and health services; and leisure and hospitality (+700 jobs each). Other industries that gained jobs over the year included mining, logging, and construction (+500 jobs) and other services and government (+100 jobs each). Information and financial services remained unchanged over the year.

Manufacturing (-200 jobs) and professional and business services (-100 jobs) were the only industries to lose jobs in the region over the year.

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