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Business Observer Friday, Mar. 25, 2011 11 years ago

Gulf Coast unemployment down

February 2011 unemployment rates are down over the year in every county.

Unemployment is down 0.8 percentage points over the year on average in each of the counties within the Business Review's coverage area, according to the Agency for Workforce Innovation's data for February.

Three counties — Charlotte, Collier and Lee — actually lost about 1,000 net jobs each, but even larger reductions to each locality's labor force brought the unemployment rate down.

As a region, the Gulf Coast added 7,857 jobs over the year. Employers in Hillsborough, Pinellas and Pasco counties combined to create about 10,000 jobs, while Manatee and Sarasota employers created another 1,000 net jobs themselves.

The statewide unemployment rate for February 2011, prior to seasonal adjustment, is 11.0%, down from 11.4% a year ago. The unadjusted national rate is 9.5%.

The unemployment rate officially recognized by the state — which includes adjustments for seasonality — is 11.5%, which is actually higher than the seasonally adjusted rate from February 2010.

A full county-by-county break down of changes in employment is provided below.

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