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Economy / Business

Florida Unemployment Rate Better than National Average


It's the first time since 2008 that Florida's unemployment rate hasn't topped the national average. Florida's January unemployment rate is 7.8 percent.

The national average is 7.9 percent.

The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity analyzed the numbers. Executive director Jesse Panuccio said 96,000 people have since joined Florida's labor force since January last year.

"So in Florida's case, the gain in the labor force is all due to employment gain over the year and that's good news," he said.

The highest job producing sectors were trade, transportation, and utilities with more than 35,000 jobs. The leisure and hospitality industry followed close behind with the highest gain in job growth compared to the other sectors-- 3.5 percent.