Four metropolitan areas in the state of Florida are at the top of the country’s employment rate ranking. Jacksonville, Miami, Tampa and Orlando have some of the best rates. In contrast, Las Vegas, Chicago and Los Angeles are at the top of the unemployment rates.
These are some of the conclusions that can be drawn from the Bureau of Labor Statistics data for February 2023, which was updated last Friday. They affect metropolitan areas with more than one million legal workers. Miami managed to reduce its unemployment rate to 2.2% in February, the best in the country. The Tampa Bay metropolitan area was at 2.5% while Orlando and Jacksonville are at 2.6% and 2.7% respectively.
Las Vegas, Chicago and Los Angeles recorded unemployment rates of 5.7%, 4.4% and 4.3%, respectively, the worst in the country. This is well above the national average, which in March was 3.5%.
A growing state
Florida maintains a job creation streak of more than 30 consecutive months, which is highly unusual. Even despite the impact of Hurricane Ian, the state maintained its growth trend.
Florida, which lost about 1.28 million jobs in 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic, is recovering better than the national average. In recent years, Florida has become a destination of choice for business, and therefore for job creation in the private sector.
The Sunshine State is also the state with the most in-migration in 2023. Nearly 1.5 million Americans moved to Florida in the last decade, increasing its population at the fastest rate of growth in the country. Many people are fleeing more expensive states with fewer opportunities and are settling down in the south. Florida became the state with the highest population growth in 2022, at 1.9%. It was the first time that had happened since 1957, according to the Census Bureau.
A practical example of this migration movement in the fact that 200 police officers traded their jobs in New York, California or Pennsylvania for a position in Florida, due to the better living and working conditions in the south.