Jobs, Jobs, Jobs – JAX Region Finishes 2014 Strong
Upbeat economic news abounds in NE FL with the local unemployment rate dropping to about 5.4% in December 2014. The article, by Drew Dixon of The Florida Times-Union, goes on to tell about other encouraging news.
Our own research suggests even stronger data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics: preliminary November 2014 data suggests the JAX MSA unemployment rate is a tick higher at 5.5%, but that is the lowest since May 2008, and one-half the 11+% rate in mid-2010. As of November 2014, BLS also reports some 640,500 persons were employed; that’s more than ever before (the previous peak, non-seasonally adjusted, was 636,200 in May 2007). And the November 2014 figure of 640,500 is 17,000 more than November 2013 and almost 38,000 more than in the same time in 2013, showing solid, consistent growth. As the chart below indicates, recent job growth in JAX has been double that of the nation; (chart from http://www.bls.gov/regions/southeast). The strongest recent job growth has been in Professional and Business Services up 7.0% Nov ’14 from Nov ’13, followed by Leisure and Hospitality (+4.6%) and Education and Health Services (+2.6%).