from Takeaways from Tallahassee
by Peter Schorsch
November 22, 2021
Florida reached an economic milestone in October, notching 18 months of consecutive job growth, among other accomplishments.
Gov. Ron DeSantis touted the milestone and highlighted his “business first” policies as the foundation of the rebound. They, he stressed, helped Florida gain 1.1 million private-sector jobs since April 2020 ‑ marking an 89% recuperation of jobs lost during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“Florida’s economy continues to grow faster than the nation because we put the needs of Floridians and businesses first and make smart policy decisions that push back against heavy-handed mandates,” DeSantis said. “With 18 consecutive months of job growth and 12 consecutive months of labor force increases, we will continue to make investments that move our economy forward.”
Indeed, the state’s labor force and unemployment rates are also improving. Unemployment lowered and now hovers around the current rate of 4.6%.
Meanwhile, job opportunities are plenty. More than 518,00 jobs in Florida are available and posted online, according to the Governor’s Office.
Florida’s labor force growth is also rivaling the national average, with a 5.8% increase over the year. The term ‘labor force’ refers to the number of folks working or looking to work.
“Florida continues to see job growth, increases in labor force, and a decline in unemployment rate thanks to Gov. DeSantis’ policy decisions to protect Floridians and their jobs,” said SecretaryDane Eagle of the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity. “Floridians and businesses remain confident in the state’s economy, and as evidence of that confidence, Florida’s current participation in the labor force of 10,590,000 is actually larger than Florida’s February 2020 labor force of 10,461,000.”
In all, October was a good month for Floridians. The unemployment rate lowered from 4.8% to 4.9%, while job creation also increased.
Several industries reported job market growth including, particularly in leisure and hospitality, with 16,600 new jobs. The second leading industry categories were trade, transportation and utilities, with 10,400 jobs. Education, health services, and business services also reported job creation.