FloridaCommerce Press Releases

FloridaCommerce Announces Southwest Florida February 2024 Employment Data

Mar 22, 2024

FloridaCommerce Announces Southwest Florida Labor Force Up 11,086 Over the Year in February 2024


Naples, Fla. — Today, FloridaCommerce announced that the Southwest Florida labor force increased by 11,086 over the year in February 2024. Fort Myers area unemployment rate was 3.3 percent in February 2024, up 0.2 percentage point from the year ago rate of 3.1 percent. The Fort Myers area labor force grew by 7,247 over the year in February 2024, a 1.9 percent increase, and the Naples area labor force increased by 3,839 over the year, a 2.0 percent increase.

Additionally, the Fort Myers area’s private sector employment grew by 4,400 jobs over the year in February 2024, an increase of 1.7 percent. The Fort Myers area industries gaining the most jobs over the year were construction, increasing by 2,600 jobs; government, increasing by 1,700 jobs; and trade, transportation, and utilities, increasing by 1,100 jobs.

The Naples area had a 3.0 percent unemployment rate in February 2024, up 0.4 percentage point over the year. The Naples area private sector employment increased by 3,700 jobs (+2.3 percent) over the year in February 2024. The Naples area industry gaining the most jobs over the year was leisure and hospitality, increasing by 1,200 jobs.

Florida’s statewide unemployment rate has been lower than the national rate for 40 consecutive months. The national unemployment rate was 3.9 percent for February 2024, 0.8 percentage point higher than Florida’s rate. Florida’s private sector job growth rate increased by 2.3 percent (+194,200 jobs) over the year in February 2024. This is faster than the national rate of 1.6 percent over the same period.

Florida’s economic data continues to indicate economic stability and confidence among Florida’s workforce as the state’s labor force grew by 2.0 percent (+217,000) over the year in February 2024, which is faster than the national over-the-year rate of 0.7 percent.

The education and health services sector gained the most jobs among all major industries, adding 57,500 jobs from the previous year, followed by trade, transportation, and utilities, adding 48,300 jobs; leisure and hospitality (tourism), adding 35,000 jobs.

Data in the month of February continues to indicate there are many job opportunities available for every Floridian who wants to work, with more than 443,000 jobs posted online. Floridians in search of work and new job opportunities can utilize the CareerSource Florida network for help. Floridians can find guidance on how to register with Employ Florida and search listings of available local job openings. Career seekers also can improve their employability by perfecting resume writing and interviewing skills, establishing career goals, and pursuing customized career training. These services are provided at no cost to job seekers. 

To view the February 2024 jobs reports by region, please see below: 
•    Fort Lauderdale
•    Jacksonville
•    Miami
•    Orlando
•    Pensacola
•    Southwest Florida
•    Tampa
•    West Palm Beach

To view February 2024 employment data, visit: www.floridajobs.org/labor-market-information/labor-market-information-press-releases/monthly-press-releases.

Visit Florida Insight for more information on labor market and economic data. Additionally, FloridaCommerce has provided a video to assist users in explaining the data provided through Florida Insight.




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