Alachua County Economic Indicators Report Released for March 2018

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO) have recently released employment and unemployment estimates as well as revised historical data.  

As a highlight of the report, the Gainesville Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) is showing mixed results in year-to-year employment and sales tax receipts with declines in several sectors:

Unemployment stays lower than state and national levels. Gainesville MSA March 2018 seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 3.4%, unchanged from the February 2018 rate.

Employment growth losing pace to state averages. The over-the-year growth of Nonfarm Employment by 1.0% was outpaced by the statewide increase of 2.1%. 5 out of 10 major industries in the Gainesville MSA posted over-the-year gains in March 2018. Employment losses were seen in only one industry: Information.  

Taxable sales in Consumer Durables experienced double digit-growth while Building Investment & Tourism & Recreation experienced declines. Gainesville MSA over-the-year growth of taxable sales by 4.8% was outpaced by the statewide increase of 8.8%. Sales tax receipts in Building Investment and Tourism & Recreation experienced declines in March 2018 (-1.0% & -2.4%, respectively). Sales tax receipts in Consumer Durables experienced a 23.5% increase.

Cost of living remains below national average. The Gainesville MSA cost of living was calculated at 98.4 points for the 2017 Annual Average Index, below the national average of 100 points. The following categories of consumer expenditures posted above the national average cost of living: Grocery items, utilities, and transportation.  

This report provides a snapshot of recent changes in the economy of the Gainesville MSA. The MSA is comprised by Alachua County and Gilchrist County. The report draws on official statistics that have been released during the last month.  The data published in this publication was gathered from several sources such as: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), National Association of Realtors, Council for Community & Economic Research (C2ER), Florida Department of Economic Opportunity (DEO), and Office of Economic & Demographic Research.

View the Report

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