Today, Governor Rick Scott highlighted the Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) for gaining the second highest number of jobs in October 2013 among all metro areas in Florida compared to a year ago. The Area added 29,100 new jobs over the year. The Orlando MSA's unemployment rate declined by 1.8 percentage points over the year, from 7.8 percent in October 2012 to 6.0 percent in October 2013.
Governor Rick Scott said, "The Orlando area gained the second highest number of private sector jobs throughout Florida. Since December 2010, the unemployment rate for the area has dropped to 6 percent and Florida has created a statewide total of 440,900 new private sector jobs. This is evidence that our pro-growth and business friendly policies are working."
In October 2013, the Orlando metro area gained the most jobs over the year in Florida in the leisure and hospitality sectors with 9,700 new jobs. Orlando was also among the top two metro areas in education and health services growth with 4,400 new jobs and financial activities with 2,300 new jobs. The Manpower Employment Outlook Survey for the fourth quarter of 2013 indicates that Orlando area employers expect to continue hiring at a brisk pace. Twenty-two percent of the companies interviewed plan to hire more employees.
Housing starts in the Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford MSA were up by 12.8 percent over the year in August 2013 compared to a year ago. The Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford MSA had the second-highest online job demand in Florida in October 2013 with 37,046 openings and also ranked number two in STEM overall demand in the state with 7,511 openings. STEM is an acronym for science, technology, engineering and mathematics, and these jobs are considered high wage and high skill.
Florida's unemployment rate decreased to 6.7 percent in October 2013, down from 6.8 percent in September 2013 and 7.0 in August 2013, and down 4.4 percentage points since December 2010. The statewide unemployment rate has remained below the national average of 7.3 percent since March 2013. Florida has created 440,900 private sector jobs since December 2010.
The Governor's announcement comes on the heels of a report by VISIT FLORIDA that 22.9 million visitors came to Florida in the third quarter of 2013, which is an increase of 1.7 percent over the same period in 2012. The report highlights that the tourism figures represent the largest third quarter for visitation in the state's history.