Unemployment falls in South Florida

Florida's unemployment took a nice turn downward in October, falling to the lowest level since 2008, the state said Friday.

Statewide, the rate declined to 8.5 percent in October, down from 8.7 percent in September. Unemployment is 1.7 percentage points lower than October 2011's rate of 10.2 percent.

In South Florida, Broward County's unemployment fell to 7.1 percent from a upwardly revised 7.6 percent in September. The rate was 9 percent a year ago in October.

Palm Beach County's unemployment fell to 8.6 percent, from 9.3 percent in September -- also revised upward. In October 2011, Palm Beach County's unemployment was 10.5 percent. 

The state also added 12,100 new private sector jobs, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity said.

Since December 2010, the state's unemployment rate has dropped 2.6 percentage points and 174,500 private sector jobs have been created, DEO said.

Unemployment rates fell across across the Treasure Coast in October as well, despite an almost 1 percent increase in the region's workforce during the month.

Unemployment rates fell from 11.5 percent in October to 10.8 percent in October.

The number of people with jobs increased by 3,296, even though the number of people unemployed and seeking work fell by 1,491. The numbers reflect people are returning to the workforce.

Paul Ivice, Scripps Treasure Coast Newspapers contributed to this report


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