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Unemployment hits a four-year low in Palm Beach County

By Palm Beach

DELRAY BEACH — The statewide jobless rate fell, and fell fairly sharply, in November, according to data released Friday by Florida’s Department of Economic Opportunity.

The rate also fell in Palm Beach County, hitting a four-year low.

Statewide unemployment fell to 8.1 percent, seasonally adjusted, from October’s 8.5 percent and from 10.1 percent a year earlier. The number of unemployed dropped to 760,000 in November from 791,000 in October and from 935,000 a year earlier.

At the peak, the number of unemployed in Florida approached 1.01 million.

Palm Beach County’s rate of 8.3 percent is the lowest since December 2008, when it was 7.8 percent. Palm Beach County’s October rate was 8.6 percent; a year earlier it was 10.2 percent. The number of those out of work fell to 51,733 from 53,627 in October.

Unlike the statewide numbers, county data are not adjusted for seasonal factors such as holiday hiring and the winter tourism season.

“This encouraging news certainly brightens the holiday season for job seekers, and there’s more — (Palm Beach) county gained nearly 6,000 jobs compared to last year,” Workforce Alliance CEO Steve Craig said. Workforce Alliance is the agency that handles the state’s jobs programs in Palm Beach County.

The county saw job growth in five industry sectors during the 12 months through November: leisure/hospitality, up 3,400 jobs; government, up 2,500 jobs; trade/transportation/utilities, up 1,900 jobs; education and health services, up 400 jobs; and other services, up 100 jobs.

Broward County also saw a slight drop in its jobless rate for November, to 7.0 percent from October’s 7.1 percent. A year ago the jobless rate sat at 8.8 percent. 

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DECEMBER 21, 2012 click to go home
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