Today, Governor Rick Scott announced the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) led all metro areas in over the year job creation, with a gain of more than 33,000 jobs. The MSA also experienced a 2.0 percentage point decline in the unemployment rate during the same time period, down to 7.4 percent. Additionally, since December 2010 the metro area’s unemployment rate has declined 4.0 percentage points, dropping from 11.4 percent to 7.4 percent.

Governor Scott said, “Everything we do is geared toward job creation and today we have more proof that IT’S WORKING. The creation of over 33,000 jobs in the Tampa Bay area is further proof that the steps we’re taking to create jobs and opportunities for Florida families is working. Statewide, we’ve added more than 290,000 private-sector jobs over the last two years, which means we’re providing hundreds of thousands of opportunities for families across the Sunshine State to achieve the American Dream.”

The Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater MSA led all metro areas in Florida in job gains over the year with 33,200, and also led the state in the following industries (not seasonally adjusted):

  • Education      and Health Services (+8,600 jobs)
  • Professional      and Business Services (+8,500 jobs)
  • Other      services (+2,000 jobs)

The Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater MSA’s unemployment rate dropped from 9.4 percent last February to its current rate of 7.4 percent (not seasonally adjusted). Additionally, Hernando County’s rate dropped from 12.2 percent down to 9.0 percent, while Pasco County’s rate dropped 2.6 percentage points from 10.8 percent down to 8.2 percent. Hillsborough County’s rate decreased 1.8 percentage points, from 9.0 percent to 7.2 percent and Pinellas County’s rate declined to 7.3 percent from 9.1 percent, a 1.8 percentage point change.

Housing starts in the Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater metro area were up in February 2013 over the year (+40.2 percent). The Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater MSA was first among the state metros in online job demand in February 2013 with 41,782 openings. The metro area was also first in the state in demand for STEM occupations with 11,474 openings in February, an increase of 5.7 percent over the year. STEM is an acronym for science, technology, engineering and mathematics, and these jobs are considered high wage and high skill.

In February, WorkNet Pinellas and Tampa Bay Workforce Alliance along with the state’s other 23 Regional Workforce Boards reported more than 38,000 Floridians were placed in jobs. An individual who receives employment and training assistance through a One-Stop Career Center and finds a job within 180 days is deemed a placement and may be reported by a regional workforce board. Of these individuals, 11,034 previously received Reemployment Assistance.  In 2012, more than 426,000 Floridians were placed in jobs, with nearly 111,173 former claimants finding employment.

Florida’s unemployment rate decreased to 7.7 percent, down from the revised January 2013 rate of 7.9 percent and the lowest since October 2008.  The state experienced an increase of 7,700 private sector jobs over the month and 139,200 jobs were created since February 2012. This increase brings the total number of private sector jobs created since December 2010 to 294,200. Since Governor Scott took office, the state’s unemployment rate has dropped 3.4 percentage points.

To view the February 2013 monthly employment data, visit:



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