Flagler County is no longer a leader in unemployment: its 6.9 percent unemployment rate in January ranked it 14th in the state, after Flagler spent the better part of the last seven years near or at the top of the chart of the counties worst hit by unemployment. In December, the state’s labor department reported, the county saw an unemployment rate of 6.5 percent.
The last time Flagler had an unemployment rate that low was in December 2007, when it was 6.4 percent and rising very rapidly. Flagler’s January unemployment rate brings it closer to that of Volusia County, which was 6.3 percent.
Putnam County now tops Florida’s 67 counties with the worst unemployment rate, at 8.4 percent.
Florida’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in January was 5.7 percent, unchanged from the previous month and matching the national unemployment rate. There were 551,000 jobless Floridians out of a labor force of 9,698,000.
Other strongly encouraging signs for Flagler’s labor picture: the labor force in January grew to 43,008, an increase of 395 over the previous month, and an increase of 606 over the year. The larger pool of workers also led to an increase of 202 in unemployed people in the county in January, but the number of people with jobs also increased by 193. and by just over 1,000 over the year, a significant increase.
Statewide, sectors gaining jobs included construction, services, professional and business services, waste management and administrative services, leisure and hospitality, and education and health. Local government gained slightly, but state and federal government jobs were lost in January.
As always in March, this is the first of two state unemployment reports, with the second to be released on March 27, showing results for February unemployment. The state’s labor department, which refers to itself as the Department of Economic Opportunity, noted today that every March, the U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity release January employment and unemployment estimates as well as revised historical data. Today’s report is the result of that annual process, which is known as ‘benchmarking.’ Benchmark revisions are a standard part of the estimation process and take place this same time every year in each state nationwide.”
Tom Jacks says
If (and I personally do not believe it) the unemployment rate in flagler county fell to 6.9%, then it is only from the unemployed leaving the work force. It is NOT because of a plethora of jobs coming to flagler county.
Did you miss the part where it said the labor force grew?
This is one of the biggest “arguments” against job numbers when they don’t match people’s preconceived notions, but there are ways to track people leaving the workforce as well, and that didn’t happen here. You can also check the U6 numbers (this is U3, there are six different ways the government tracks job statistics) which include those workforce numbers you’re claiming as well.
In short: Your beliefs are incorrect.
Home insurance and flood insurance just cost me the little I had saved last year. My job pays “squat” with NO health insurance. I can’t afford an ObamaCare deductible of $3000.00. I’m getting old and getting another job is not going to happen. Warm weather now so I can grow some vegetables and catch fish. So I won’t starve yet ! Don’t think I can make it another year in this city. Oh well, I had a nice life for a few years back when Palm Coast was a retirement community. Sure wish they had not lied about that back in the 80’s.
The Federal Reserve decided not to raise interest rates even though we have supposedly low national unemployment. The data point of having low unemployment does not however match up with the fact that we have low GDP growth that can be defined as consumption growth. If the Federal Reserve looks at more than one data point to determine the condition of the overall economy then we should be looking at more data to determine the condition of our local economy. The decision by the Fed not to raise interest rates with a low unemployment rate is a game changer in how much weight the unemployment number should be given. The theory that havng a job means you are able to realize the american dream is obviusly not a valid theory. Does having a job mean that you are successful? It may or it may not. Validity if if something measures what it says it measures.