The number of Americans who filed new unemployment claims totaled 206,000 in the week ending Dec. 11 as the tight labor market continues to recover, though it remains far from pre-pandemic levels.

Florida First-Time Jobless Claims Drop

First-time unemployment claims dropped last week in Florida and remained similar to pre-pandemic levels.

The U.S. Department of Labor on Thursday estimated 4,493 initial claims were filed last week in the state, down from a revised count of 4,866 claims during the week that ended March 19. The federal agency had initially projected the total for the week ending March 19 at 4,704.

The number of Americans who filed new unemployment claims totaled 206,000 in the week ending Dec. 11 as the tight labor market continues to recover, though it remains far from pre-pandemic levels.

Florida has averaged 4,275 new claims a week over the past four weeks. Since the start of the year, Florida has averaged 5,886 new claims a week.

Those claim numbers are similar to the levels before the COVID-19 pandemic caused businesses to shut down or scale back in early 2020.

The number of first-time claims jumped to 74,313 claims during the week that ended March 21, 2020, and spiked to 228,484 the following week.

Last Friday, the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity said the state’s February unemployment rate was 3.3. percent, reflecting an estimated 348,000 Floridians out of work from a labor force of 10.471 million.

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