After posting a strong finish in 2014, Florida job growth has moderated so far this year based on the latest survey from payroll processing firm ADP.
Florida added a modest 14,400 private sector jobs last month, down slightly from February and on par with January.
The state remains third in the nation in job creation behind California (35,700 jobs) and Texas (18,800). But the pace is far off 2014, when job creation topped 20,000 for several months.
Florida's slowdown is not unusual.
"Job growth in the South is lagging compared to the strong pace it has shown in recent years, as the impact of lower energy prices (in places like Texas) ripples throughout the region," said Ahu Yildirmaz, vice president and head of the ADP Research Institute. "In contrast, the West enjoyed healthy job growth during the month of March with rates that were more than double that of the other three regions."
Consistent with past reports, the vast majority of newly created jobs in Florida were in the service-producing sector (12,900 jobs) instead of the goods-producing sector (1,500 jobs), which skews toward higher-paying positions.
ADP's figures are based on company payroll data and do not include government jobs. The Labor Department's March report for Florida, which is due to be released April 17, includes public and private job creation, as well as the latest unemployment rate.