Unemployment tracks up in Southwest Florida
AP and FOX 4 Staff
CAPE CORAL, Fla. - The latest unemployment numbers for Southwest Florida stand in contrast to the overall jobless picture for the Sunshine State. Unemployment in Florida held steady at 7.1% in July for the third consecutive month.
The state rate, however, remains below the national unemployment rate of 7.4 percent.
However in Southwest Florida, the jobless numbers crept up slightly in the area's three largest counties. Charlotte and Lee Counties each saw increases of one-tenth of one percent in unemployment while Collier saw a jump of .2%. Below are the jobless figures for our area.
July 2013 June 2013
Charlotte County 7.4% 7.3%
Collier County 7.5% 7.3%
Lee County 7.6% 7.5%
DeSoto County 8.8% 8.1%
Glades County 9.3% 8.7%
Hendry County 15.5% 13.6%
Gov. Rick Scott has used the state's unemployment rate as part of his re-election pitch for next year. The rate the last three months is the lowest it has been since the jobless rate was 7 percent in September 2008.
State economists, however, released an analysis this summer showing a reason for the unemployment decline has been people leaving the labor force or delaying their search for a job.
The latest numbers show there are 665,000 people out of work in Florida.