First-time unemployment claims in Florida decreased last week, while the Florida Chamber of Commerce says hiring has become more difficult during the past six months.
The U.S. Department of Labor on Thursday reported that an estimated 5,939 initial unemployment applications were filed in Florida during the week that ended July 2, down from a revised count of 6,318 during the week that ended June 25.
Florida has seen an average of 6,448 new claims over the past four weeks. Nationally, claims last week increased by 4,000 to 235,000.
Thursday’s report came a day after the Florida Chamber of Commerce posted results of an ongoing survey that said 72.7 percent of the state’s business leaders and hiring managers contend the hiring process has become more difficult over the past six months.
Another 6.1 percent said hiring has been easier, while 21.2 said it hadn’t changed over the time frame. The state has seen increases in people leaving jobs for 14 consecutive months for reasons such as pursuing better pay and benefits, according to the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity.
A Florida Chamber news release included a workforce study that indicated about 2 million more jobs will need to be filled over what exists today because of the state’s growing population.
The Department of Economic Opportunity will release a June unemployment report on July 22. The state’s May unemployment rate was 3 percent, reflecting an estimated 313,000 people out of work from a workforce of 10.59 million.
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