Florida unemployment dips beneath national average
Associated Press and FOX 4 Staff
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) - Florida's unemployment dipped to its lowest level in more than four years in January when it fell to 7.8 percent.
The state's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate hasn't been that low since November 2008 when it also stood at 7.8 percent. It was also the first time that Florida's jobless rate bell below the national rate in five years. The national unemployment figure for January stood at 7.9 percent.
Florida's January rate was down slightly from December's revised rate of 7.9 percent. The Department of Economic Opportunity reported Monday that 740,000 Floridians remained jobless.
The trade, transportation and utility industries gaining the most jobs in Florida - some 35,500 - over the past 12 months.
The story in Southwest Florida was a stagnant one. The jobless rates for Lee and Collier Counties remained the same month to month while it actually climbed in Charlotte County.
January 2013 Decemter 2012
Lee County 7.9% 7.9%
Collier County 7.5% 7.5%
Charlotte County 8.1% 7.8%
Desoto County 8.0% 8.0%
Glades County 8.5% 8.4%
Hendry County 11.4% 11.5%