Report: Florida jobless drop exaggerated

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State economists have cast a cloud over Florida’s sunny economy recovery picture, releasing data showing nearly 70 percent of the drop in the state’s unemployment rate since December has been due to discouraged workers, reports the News Service of Florida.

The Legislative Office of Economic and Demographic Research estimated in a report Tuesday that Florida’s unemployment rate of 8.6 percent would be 9.5 percent if workers who have stopped looking for jobs were added to the picture. The rate would still be lower than the 9.9 percent posted in December. The figures provide some analytical backup to anecdotal information that much of the state and national recovery is due to a smaller labor force and not to job growth. Florida releases its June unemployment rate on Friday.

Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including,,, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.