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Governor Scott: State Unemployment Rate Drops to 7.5 Percent and More Than 32,000 Private-Sector Jobs Created Last Month

Press Release

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Date:
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Governor Rick Scott today announced that 32,400 private-sector jobs were created in Florida last month and the state's March 2013 unemployment rate decreased 0.3 percentage points to 7.5 percent. This is Florida's lowest unemployment rate since October 2008 and the second largest drop in the nation as of February.

Governor Scott said, "It is great news that our unemployment rate is below the national average at 7.5 percent and that we created more than 32,000 jobs in March. In a little over two years since I've taken office, we've created more than 320,000 private sector jobs -- and we are now closing in on the halfway point to our goal of creating 700,000 jobs in seven years. These numbers prove that IT'S WORKING in Florida and our families have opportunities to live their version of the American Dream in the Sunshine State. In Florida, our economy is turning around because we focus every day on creating new jobs for our families."

Governor Scott made today's announcement at Pelican Wire Co., a manufacturing company in Naples that was just named the Southwest Florida Manufacturer of the Year last week. Pelican Wire employs 60 people and manufactures wire used in electrical heating applications in aerospace, medical and other industries.

Over the month, the state experienced an increase of 32,400 private-sector jobs, meaning that 32,400 Floridians have been placed in new jobs and are earning wages. Florida's job growth rate is faster both over the month and over the year than the nation. Since Dec. 2010, Florida has added a total of 321,700 private-sector jobs.

More Jobs Being Created
- Florida has experienced positive annual job growth now for 32 consecutive months.
- Florida's job growth month-to-month has been positive for 20 of the last 21 months.
- Florida job postings increased in March 2013 compared to the previous March by 6,467 (+2.7 percent), according to the Help Wanted OnLine data series from the Conference Board.
- The number of available online job openings in STEM-related (sciences, technology, engineering, and math) fields in Florida have increased since last year, up 8.4 percent, for a total of 55,637 postings in March 2013.
- Florida is expected to create more than 900,000 new jobs by 2018, according to the Florida Economic Estimating Conference.

Unemployment Continues to Decline
- Florida's unemployment rate has now declined year-over-year for 29 consecutive months.
- Initial claims for Reemployment Assistance benefits were down by 10.4 percent from one year ago.

Home Sales Robust
- Home sales remain robust as the backlog of existing homes on the market is down by 32 percent from February 2012 (Florida Realtors).
- Florida housing starts were up over the year in February 2013 (the most recent month available) by 39.1 percent and median home prices were up 12.8 percent in February 2013 over the year.

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 $24 billion -- with $86.8 billion in exports and $62.4 billion in imports in 2011, up from $73.1 billion in exports in 2010 and $53.2 billion in imports in 2010.

Workforce Boards Assisting in Employment
- In February, the state's 24 Regional Workforce Boards reported more than 31,329 Floridians placed in jobs.
- More than 426,000 Floridians were placed in jobs in 2012, with 111,173 former claimants finding employment.

To view the March 2013 monthly employment data visit:

www.floridajobs.org/labor-market-information/labor-market-information-press-releases/monthly-press-releases.


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