Florida jobless rate holds steady

Florida jobless rate holds steady


By Linda Kleindienst

TALLAHASSEE — More than one out of every 10 Florida workers remained jobless in October as the state’s unemployment rate hit 11.2 percent.

That means more than 1,027,000 workers out of the state’s 9.1 million labor force were looking for a job.

Industries losing the most jobs are trade, transportation, and utilities; professional and business services; and construction. These three industries account for more than two-thirds of the job losses in the state. Healthcare has been Florida’s only growth sector for most of 2009.

The unemployment rate remained nearly unchanged from the September rate of 11.1 percent, but is up 4.3 percentage points from the October 2008 rate and is the highest since June 1975. The national jobless rate hit 10.2 percent in October. The new numbers were released early Friday.

“This rate indicates that Florida’s families and businesses are still facing challenges, while fewer job losses reveal slight improvement in the economic climate,” said Agency for Workforce Innovation Director Cynthia R. Lorenzo. “We remain committed to serving the needs of unemployed workers and employers through Florida’s dynamic network of job placement and training services.”