Please ensure Javascript is enabled for purposes of website accessibility Palm Beach County Unemployment Rate Drops to 3.1 Percent; Record High Number of Employed Set

Palm Beach County Unemployment Rate Drops to 3.1 Percent; Record High Number of Employed Set

West Palm Beach, Fla. (Dec. 22, 2023) – Palm Beach County job seekers have much to be merry about this holiday season – the unemployment rate for November 2023 announced today is 3.1 percent, below 3.2 percent last month, but above the year-ago rate of 2.6 percent, according to the latest reports released today by CareerSource Palm Beach County and the Florida Commerce Department (all numbers not seasonally adjusted):

  • The county’s rate remains below the 3.5 percent national rate but above Florida’s 2.9 percent rate. The county’s rate has remained below the nation’s for more than three years.
  • Total nonagricultural employment in the county reached a record high 691,600, adding 8,300 jobs over the year – a 1.2 percent gain. For more than two years, there have been more job openings than unemployed people in Palm Beach County.

“At no other time in Palm Beach County’s history has there been a more diversified, high-quality employer base, making our economy more resilient – and contributing to near record low unemployment rates for more than two years,” said Julia Dattolo, President and CEO of CareerSource Palm Beach County, the nonprofit organization chartered by the state to lead workforce development in the county.

Job growth/loss by industry sector: The education/health services industry sector led the county in over-the-year job growth adding 5,900 jobs for a 5.4 percent jump. The number of jobs in the leisure/hospitality and government sectors grew faster in the county than statewide over the year.


By the numbers, over-the-year job gains and losses by sector are:

Industry                                               Change                         Total jobs

Education/health services                     +5,900 jobs                   114,700

Government                                         +2,400 jobs                   66,500

Leisure/hospitality                                +1,300 jobs                   95,800

Trade/transportation/utilities                +1,100 jobs                   127,600

Construction                                         +900 jobs                      42,700

Financial activities                                 +200 jobs                      50,000

Manufacturing                                      +100 jobs                      21,600

Other services                                       -400 jobs                      29,900

Information                                          -400 jobs                      10,900

Professional/business services             -2,800 jobs                   131,700


Trends Observed This Period


  • Continued strong job market
  • Palm Beach County unemployment rate below 4% for more than 2 years
  • Record high 9.5 million visitors to Palm Beach County
  • U.S. inflation drops to 3.1%


  • Housing affordability
  • Rising insurance costs, availability
  • Childcare costs, availability

Regional State of the Workforce Report Now Available

Our annual State of the Workforce Report is now available on our website at this link:

The report provides a complete picture of the characteristics of Palm Beach County’s workforce from the most in-demand jobs and workforce education and training to wages, employers, and key industry sectors. There also are sections on unemployment rate history, women in the workforce, and a five-year overview.

“This report provides a comprehensive look at who are residents and employers are, their needs, and the challenges they face now and in the future,” Ms. Dattolo said.

State, Palm Beach County Lead in Attracting, Developing Skilled Workforce

Lightcast’s 2023 Talent Attraction Scorecard, released last week, ranked Florida as the #1 state in the nation for attracting and developing a talented workforce for the second year in a row. Out of more than 600 large counties nationwide, Lightcast ranked Palm Beach County 23rd overall.

The Talent Attraction Scorecard evaluates states and counties based on job growth, education attainment, regional competitiveness, and migration data.

“Our efforts and initiatives are not going unnoticed,” Ms. Dattolo said. “Earlier this year, the National Association of Workforce Development Professionals presented their National Workforce Employer of the Year award to CareerSource Palm Beach County and the Business Development Board of Palm Beach County for our partnership to improve economic and employment development in the region.”

New Year, New Career? Looking to Hire? Here’s Help!

CareerSource offers job fairs, workshops, and facilities for job searches, grants for job skills training for those who qualify, career development and consulting. During the past five program years, CareerSource Palm Beach County assisted nearly 33,000 residents find employment/reemployment ranging from entry-level to executive suite. CareerSource also awarded $11.9 million in grants to area businesses and employees for job training and educational assistance during that time. More information is at

CareerSource also provides services to help businesses prosper in today’s challenging marketplace 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 Jan. 19:  State and local employment reports for year-end 2023 are scheduled for release on Jan. 19, 2024.

CareerSource centers closed Dec. 22 – 26 for Christmas holidays; Dec. 29 – Jan. 2 for New Year’s holidays


Note to editors: Although our centers are closed today, a CareerSource spokesperson is available for interviews on local employment and economic trends until 1 p.m. today at the West Palm Beach career center. Please call 561.340.1061 ext. 2229 for requests.

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. Palm Beach County’s record-low unemployment rate was 2.2 percent in December 2022. Outside of the Great Depression, the county’s record-high unemployment rate was 14.7 percent in April 2020.



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 $14,386,462 (revised annually). Unless otherwise stipulated, all statements, news releases, requests for proposals, bid solicitations and other applicable documents are fully funded from federal sources.


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