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Real estate matters

ORLANDO, Fla. – Jan. 14, 2014 – The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that employment rose by 74,000 jobs in December, well below the consensus expectation of a 200,000 increase last month. For 2013 as a whole, the national economy added approximately 182,000 jobs per month. Although the GDP grew 3.6% in the 3rd Quarter of 2013, preliminary growth estimates for the 4th Quarter were significantly lower than previous quarters. The outlook is not strong for the start of 2014, and we suspect a weakening expansion across the macroeconomy.

Job creation in Florida, however, grew more than the national average in the last quarter, a promising sign for the real estate market moving ahead this year. Over the whole of 2013, Florida ranked third in job increases per month at 183,000, and second in year-over-year percentage increase for nonfarm payroll employment at 2.5%. The unemployment rate was also consistently lower than the national average and we closed the year with an unemployment rate of 6.4%, compared to the national average of 7.0%.

What does this mean for your market?

You may see a shift upwards in professionals relocating their families for high-skilled jobs, and a slight downturn in out-of-state families purchasing second homes in Florida. Naturally, this is all dependent on other individual states’ job growth and economic performance compared to the national average.

Below are several helpful links for further reference:

Current Employment Statistics Highlights

Wall Street Journal Economic Forecasting Survey

Bureau of Labor Statistics: State Employment

Bureau of Labor Statistics: National Employment

-- Stephanie Lichtenstein, research assistant, Florida Realtors