Duval County's 11.3% Unemployment Rate Less Than State's

May 26, 2020

As bad as the unemployment numbers are, the Jacksonville metropolitan area’s four big counties are all doing better than the state as a whole.

More than three-quarters of a million Floridians joined the ranks of the unemployed as the coronavirus pandemic fully took hold in April, pushing the state’s jobless rate to 12.9%, according to state figures.

The rate was up from a revised 4.4% mark in March, when the virus began causing businesses to shut down or scale back.

While still bleak, April jobless numbers were lower on the First Coast:

  • Duval County: 11.3%
  • Nassau County: 12.4%
  • Clay County: 10.2%
  • St. Johns County: 11.6%

It appears the number of layoffs in Jacksonville may be slowing. The Worker Adjustment and Retraining Notification Act (WARN) requires companies with 100 or more employees to give advance notice of layoffs so workers and families can prepare.

Related: Local, State, And National Coronavirus Coverage

At the time of this story’s publication, a new WARN notice had not been posted for a Jacksonville business since May 7, when Autobahn Indoor Speedway announced 62 temporary layoffs. Since then, the company has started hiring employees back and reopened its business.

The April unemployment rate surpassed Florida’s peak during the recession a decade ago.

“If we can get people back to work, get some confidence back in the communities, you'll start to see, hopefully, a lot of these jobs be recovered,” DeSantis said Friday at Ed Austin Park in Jacksonville.

Most Florida counties have seen double-digit job losses. Osceola County topped the list at 20.3%, while Lafayette County faired the best with a 5.5% unemployment rate.

Here’s the county-by-county April unemployment breakdown across Florida:

  • Osceola County: 20.3%
  • Monroe County: 17.5%
  • Orange County: 16.5%
  • Citrus County: 15.8%
  • Charlotte County: 15.6%
  • Flagler County: 15.4%
  • Hernando County 15%
  • Sarasota County: 14.8%
  • Lake County: 14.7%
  •  Lee County: 14.6%
  • Volusia County: 14.6%
  • Broward County: 14.5%
  • Walton County: 14.5%
  • St. Lucie County: 14.2%
  • Indian River County: 14.1%
  • Palm Beach County: 13.9%
  • Pasco County: 13.9%
  • Pinellas County: 13.9%
  • Manatee County: 13.5%
  •  Collier County: 13.4%
  • Polk County: 13.4%
  • Okaloosa County: 13.3%
  • Seminole County: 13.1%
  • Brevard County: 12.9%
  • Bay County; 12.8%
  • Escambia County: 12.8%
  • Nassau County: 12.4%
  • Sumter County: 12.3%
  • Marion County: 12.1%
  • Hillsborough County; 12%
  • Martin County: 11.9%
  • Miami-Dade County: 11.9%
  • St. Johns County: 11.6%
  • Highlands County; 11.4%
  • Duval County: 11.3%
  • Levy County: 11%
  • Putnam County: 11%
  • Hendry County: 10.5%
  • Santa Rosa County: 10.5%
  • Franklin County: 10.3%
  • Clay County: 10.2%
  • Washington County: 10.2%
  • Hamilton County: 10%
  • Columbia County: 9.6%
  • Gulf County: 9.4%
  • Alachua County: 9%
  • Bradford County: 8.5%
  • Suwannee County: 8.5%
  • Gilchrist County: 8.2%
  • Leon County: 8.2%
  • Calhoun County: 8.1%
  • Hardee County: 8.1%
  • Madison County: 8.1%
  • Okeechobee County: 8.1%
  • Jackson County: 8%
  • Dixie County: 7.9%
  •  Taylor County: 7.8%
  • Wakulla County: 7.8%
  • Jefferson County: 7.7%
  • Baker County: 7.6%
  • Gadsden County: 7.6%
  • Union County: 7.5%
  • DeSoto County: 7.4%
  • Glades County: 7.2%
  • Liberty County: 7%
  • Lafayette County: 5.5%

NOTE: County rates are not seasonally adjusted. The statewide 12.9% rate announced Friday is seasonally adjusted.

Bill Bortzfield can be reached at bbortzfield@wjct.org, 904-358-6349 or on Twitter at @BortzInJax.