West Palm Beach, Fla. (April 21, 2023) – Palm Beach County’s unemployment rate for March 2023 announced today is 2.6 percent, continuing a 3-month streak of the same rate. It also is below the year-ago rate of 2.9 percent, according to the latest reports released today by CareerSource Palm Beach County and the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (all numbers not seasonally adjusted):
- The county’s rate remains below the 3.6 percent national rate and matches Florida’s rate of 2.6 percent. The county’s rate has remained below the nation’s for more than two years and stayed at or below 3.0 percent for 13 months.
- For the past 15 months, there have been more job openings than unemployed people in Palm Beach County. There are 31,179 job openings vs. 20,370 unemployed people in March.
- Total nonagricultural employment in the county is 679,900 adding 17,600 jobs over the year – a 2.7 percent gain.
Palm Beach County’s unemployment rate reached two record lows in 2022 with the latest record low set in December at 2.2 percent. Outside of the Great Depression, the county’s record high unemployment rate reached 14.7 percent in April 2020.
“Palm Beach County’s job market is still on a hot streak, performing better than the nation and often the state,” said Julia Dattolo, President and CEO of CareerSource Palm Beach County, the nonprofit organization chartered by the state to lead workforce development in Palm Beach County. “As the winter tourist season draws to a close, we are expecting a slight slowdown in hiring and job openings through the summer. The good news is that our economy has become more diverse over the years and more resilient to seasonal fluctuations.”
Job growth/loss by industry sector: For more than a year, the leisure/hospitality industry sector led the county in over-the-year job growth – adding 4,700 jobs for a 5.1 percent jump. Now, the education/health services sector has tied leisure/hospitality in over-the-year job growth and the number of jobs in the government sector grew faster in the county than statewide over the year.
By the numbers, there were over-the-year job gains all but two of the sectors in Palm Beach County:
Industry Change Total jobs
Leisure/hospitality +4,700 jobs 96,000
Education/health services +4,700 jobs 110,100
Trade/transportation/utilities +2,400 jobs 124,700
Government +2,100 jobs 64,700
Professional/business services +1,600 jobs 131,400
Financial activities +1,500 jobs 49,100
Manufacturing +600 jobs 21,500
Construction +200 jobs 40,600
Other services unchanged 30,600
Information -200 11,000
Trends Observed This Period
- Continued tight job market
- Continued strong consumer demand
- Product/supply chain disruptions mostly limited
- Record tourism season in Palm Beach County
- Inflation slowing
- Wage growth slowing from historically elevated levels
- Higher interest rates may weaken worker leverage in job market, lead to layoffs
- If Congress fails to raise federal debt ceiling
Looking for a New Career? Looking to Hire? Here’s Help!
CareerSource offers virtual and in-person job fairs, classes, and facilities for job searches, grants for job skills training for those who qualify, career development and consulting – at no cost! During the past five program years, CareerSource Palm Beach County assisted nearly 45,000 residents find employment/reemployment ranging from entry-level to executive suite, with salaries from these jobs creating $700 million in annual wages. CareerSource also awarded $14.7 million in grants to area businesses and employees for job training and educational assistance during that time. More information is at www.careersourcepbc.com.
CareerSource also provides services to help businesses prosper in today’s challenging marketplace. CareerSource absorbs the cost of most of these services including recruitment, assessments, and referrals of qualified job candidates; space and staff assistance for screening/interviewing candidates; and grants for training employees.
Next employment reports coming May 19: State and local employment reports for April 2023 are scheduled for release on May 19, 2023. ###
Note to editors: You are invited to interview a CareerSource spokesperson on local employment and economic trends. Please call 561.340.1061 ext. 2229 before 3 p.m. today for scheduling.
Note: The unemployment rate is a measure of how many people in the labor force are out of a job. For example, if total employment holds constant and unemployed Americans stop looking for work, thereby leaving the labor force, the unemployment rate will fall even though no jobs have been added. Conversely, if employment holds steady and recent graduates enter the labor force looking for work, the unemployment rate will rise even though no jobs have disappeared.
IN COMPLIANCE WITH THE STEVENS AMENDMENT:
CareerSource Palm Beach County, Inc. is the direct service provider for various workforce programs supported by the U.S. Departments of Labor, Health and Human Services, Education and other agencies as part of awards totaling $15,851,406 (revised annually). Unless otherwise stipulated, all statements, news releases, requests for proposals, bid solicitations and other applicable documents are fully funded from federal sources.