The Florida Department of Economic Opportunity Announces Southwest Florida March 2022 Employment Data

Apr 15, 2022

Governor DeSantis Announces Southwest Florida Labor Force Up More Than 19,000 Over the Year in March 2022

Naples, Fla. — Today, Governor Ron DeSantis announced Southwest Florida’s labor force increased by 19,612 over the year. The Fort Myers area labor force in March 2022 grew 13,110 over the year, a 3.7 percent increase, and the Naples area labor force increased by 6,502 over the year, a 3.6 percent increase.  

The Fort Myers area private sector employment grew by 12,800 jobs over the year, an increase of 5.4 percent. The industry gaining the most jobs over the year was professional and business services, increasing by 3,800 jobs. The unemployment rate in the Fort Myers area was 2.5 percent in March 2022, down from 4.7 percent reported in March 2021. 

The Naples area private sector employment increased by 6,700 jobs over the year, an increase of 4.7 percent. The industry gaining the most jobs over the year was leisure and hospitality, increasing by 2,800 jobs. The unemployment rate in the Naples area was 2.2 percent in March 2022, down from 4.1 percent reported in March 2021. 

Florida’s statewide unemployment rate dropped to 3.2 percent in March 2022, marking the 16th consecutive month the state’s unemployment rate has been lower than the national rate, which is currently 3.6 percent. Florida’s labor force is experiencing steady growth, growing by 325,000, or 3.2 percent, over the year, faster than the national labor force growth rate of 2.4 percent. As of March 2022, Florida employers added jobs for the 23rd consecutive month, and Florida outpaced the nation in private sector job growth for the 12th consecutive month.

Data in the month of March continues to indicate there are many job opportunities available for Floridians throughout the state, with nearly 510,000 jobs posted online. Floridians in search of work and new job opportunities are encouraged to turn to 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 statewide March 2022 employment data, visit  



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