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Florida unemployment rate was 4.8 percent in January

The government revised Florida's unemployment rate for last year. December's rate was 5.1 percent, not 6.1 percent as initially reported.
The government revised Florida's unemployment rate for last year. December's rate was 5.1 percent, not 6.1 percent as initially reported.

A major revision to Florida's unemployment data shows the jobless rate got worse than we knew in May and better than we knew in December.

Monday's data release also shows that Florida unemployment for January was 4.8 percent, compared to 6.3 percent nationwide.

In May, Florida unemployment rate was more than 14 percent.

By December it was 5.1 percent. And that is a full point lower than the previous estimate -- because the revision counted fewer people as looking for work.

In January, Osceola County had the state's second-highest jobless rate at 7 percent. Only Miami-Dade was worse.

Department of Economic Opportunity economist Adrienne Johnston says the Orlando metro area lost jobs in leisure and hospitality.

"We know in January there were some additional layoffs in the tourism industry related to some of the theme parks," she said. "And so that seems to be continuing to drive most of the job loss. We also saw some losses in professional and business services."

And the metro area's jobless rate rose from 4.2 to 5.8 percent.

Joe Byrnes came to WMFE/WMFV from the Ocala Star-Banner and The Gainesville Sun, where he worked as a reporter and editor for several years. Joe graduated from Loyola University in New Orleans and turned to journalism after teaching. He enjoys freshwater fishing and family gatherings.