Where is job growth hottest in Florida? At 5.2 percent, the Naples area boasted the highest annual percentage of increases between March of this year and last. But the larger Orlando area added more than 50,000 jobs at a highly respectable 4.6 percent clip in the same period. That growth rate put Orlando second nationally only to San Jose, Calif., for metro areas with populations of 1 million or more.
In Florida, the greater Miami metro area added the most jobs, given its large population, but increased at only a 3.8 percent pace. Statewide, Florida added just over 292,000 jobs in the past year, also up 3.8 percent, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
And Tampa Bay? It lagged Orlando, Miami and the state, adding just 2.9 percent more jobs, an increase of 34,500 in the March-to-March period. Among 22 Florida metro areas, Tampa Bay ranked 13th in job growth rate in the past year. Jacksonville trailed Tampa Bay, adding 16,700 jobs at a 2.7 percent rate. All 22 measured metro areas reported positive gains in jobs.