October was a great month for the labor market in Florida with a gain of 44,600 jobs, according to the Labor Department. 34 states posted gains for the month of October 2013, of which, Florida posted the highest gain. California followed with 39,800 more jobs and North Carolina with a 22,200 increase in payrolls.
The Florida unemployment rate also ticked lower to 6.7% while the national unemployment rate rose to 7.3%.
Here in Tampa Bay, over 7,100 jobs were added with the labor force now close to where it was in May 2008 at over 1.2 million.
Most of the job gains in Florida are in the Construction, Trade, Professional Services and Tourism sectors.
Tourism on track to hit an all time high record for annual visitors. In the 3rd quarter of 2013, 22.9 million people visited Florida, an increase of 1.2% over the same period last year.
In a recent news conference at Busch Gardens, Rick Scott stated, "Tourism creates a whole bunch of jobs in our state," an added that a job is created for every 85 visitors to Florida.
This is great news for anyone that is looking for a job in Tampa.
The improving labor market also came in time for the holiday season. According to S&P Capital IQ Equity Research, holiday spending is expected to have a 2.5% increase over last year's season. Although the majority of the increase in sales is expected to take place online with sites like Amazon, which is opening a distribution center in Hillsborough County, the combination of increased tourism and increase holiday spending should provide continued support for job creation.
So what lies ahead? The looming ObamaCare that most individuals and companies are facing has many bumps and roadblocks. The uncertainties may cause companies to be more conservative in the job creation and spending, tapering what could be a successful 2014; which many analysts are expecting nation wide unemployment to drop below 7%, levels that haven't been seen since November 2008.
Is the company you work for hiring? How do you feel about the current state of the local, regional and national economy? Share your thoughts in the comments below.