Florida Businesses Created 32,100 Jobs in February 2014

TALLAHASSEE — Governor Rick Scott today announced that Florida’s businesses created 32,100 private sector jobs over the month in February 2014. This is the highest number of private sector Florida jobs created in a single month since the Governor took office. Since December 2010, Florida’s economy has added 540,700 private sector jobs. The state’s unemployment rate for February 2014 was 6.2 percent, the lowest unemployment rate in the state since June 2008. The rate held steady from the revised January 2014 rate of 6.2 percent. For the seventh consecutive month, Florida’s statewide unemployment rate remains below the national unemployment rate, which was 6.7 percent in February 2014.

Governor Rick Scott said, “It is clear that businesses are growing and creating more jobs and opportunities for Floridians. We are moving Florida’s opportunity economy forward and the addition of more than 32,000 private sector jobs in just last month is great news for Florida families. Let’s keep working so that every Floridian who wants a job can get one, so let’s keep working.”

In February 2014, Florida’s labor force increased over the month and over the year. Labor force was 9,515,000 in February 2014 and is defined as the sum of employment plus unemployment (those without a job but actively seeking work). Florida’s labor force participation rate, which is labor force divided by the total civilian noninstitutional population, was 60.2 percent in February 2014, up 0.3 percentage point from the January 2014 participation rate of 59.9 percent. Although the unemployment rate held steady, the increase in the labor force this month means more people gained employment.

Jesse Panuccio, Executive Director of the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity said, “Job creation is the key to an opportunity economy and February was a very strong month on this score. We continue to have a lower unemployment rate than the nation. Our record job demand is a promise for the future for families that were devastated by the recession. We will continue to pursue policies that keep our economy growing.”

With more than 32,000 private sector jobs created in February 2014 and an unemployment rate of 6.2 percent, our low-tax and pro-business policies are working. Not only are companies recognizing Florida as the best state in the nation to do business, but Floridians across the state are finding more opportunities to get a job and provide for their families.

More Floridians Getting Back to Work
· Florida’s unemployment rate has been lower than the national rate for seven consecutive months.
· Florida’s unemployment rate has declined or held steady month over month for the last 42 months.
· Florida’s private sector job growth month-to-month has been positive for 32 consecutive months.
· Florida has created 540,700 new private sector jobs since December 2010.
· Florida job postings compiled by the Help Wanted OnLine data series from The Conference Board showed 278,717 openings in February 2014, an all-time high in the data series that began in May 2005.
Home Sales Robust
· Florida median home prices were up 10.0 percent over the year in February 2014.
· Florida housing starts were up 5.9 percent over the year in January 2014 (latest data available).

Economic Growth Trends Up Across State
· A recent U.S. Census Survey reported that Florida experienced an influx of people moving into the state. Florida also led the nation in migrations from Puerto Rico.
· Florida is running a trade surplus of over $18 billion – with $90.4 billion in exports and $71.8 billion in imports in 2012, up from $86.8 billion in exports in 2011 and $62.4 billion in imports in 2011.

Workforce Boards Assisting in Employment
· In February, Florida’s 24 Regional Workforce Boards reported more than 37,900 Floridians were placed in jobs. An individual who receives employment and training assistance through a One-Stop Career Center and finds a job within 180 days is deemed a placement and may be reported by a regional workforce board. Of these individuals, 9,620 previously received Reemployment Assistance.
· In 2013, more than 479,000 Floridians were placed in jobs, with 135,384 former claimants finding employment.

Source: Governor Rick Scott Press Release