Regional Statistics

Overview of the CareerSource Heartland Region

Not Seasonally Adjusted April 16, 2021

• The unemployment rate in the CareerSource Heartland region (DeSoto, Hardee, Highlands,
and Okeechobee counties) was 5.3 percent in March 2021. This rate was 1.3 percentage point(s) lower than the region’s year-ago rate of 6.6 percent. The region’s March 2021 unemployment rate was equal to the state rate of 5.3 percent. The labor force was 78,804, down 341 (-0.4) over the year. There were 4,182 unemployed residents in the region.

• DeSoto County and Okeechobee County had the lowest unemployment rate (4.4 percent) in the
CareerSource Heartland region followed by Hardee County (5.2 percent), and Highlands County (6.2

• Employment by industry in the CareerSource Heartland region totaled 52,276 jobs in September
2020 (the latest available data). Industry employment decreased by -3.2 percent over the year.

• The annual job growth rates for construction (+2.8 percent) and trade, transportation, and utilities (+1.1 percent) exceeded those of the state.

• The CareerSource Heartland region’s industry employment decreased by 1,753 jobs over the year in September 2020. Two of the 11 industries added jobs over the year. The industry that gained the most jobs was trade, transportation, and utilities (+123 jobs).

• In March 2021 nonagricultural employment in the Sebring MSA was 25,600, a decrease of 500 jobs
(-1.9 percent) over the year.

Unemployment Rates (%)
(not seasonally adjusted)
Mar-21Feb-21 Mar-21
CareerSource Heartland
DeSoto County4.44.15.8
Hardee County5.2 5.07.2
Highlands County6.25.97.5
Okeechobee County4.44.15.1
Florida5.3 5.1 5.0
United States6.26.6 4.5

CareerSource Heartland Region
Employment by Industry
Covered by Unemployment Compensation
(not seasonally adjusted)
Sep-20Sep-19 Change% Change
Total Employment52,27654,029-1,753-3.2
Natural Resources and Mining4,6924,733-81-1.7
Construction 3,3183,227912.8
Trade, Transportation, and Utilities11,15311,0301231.1
• Wholesale Trade1,092 1,210-118-9.8
• Retail Trade8,0687,7852833.6
• Transportation, Warehousing, and Utilities1,993 2,035-42 -2.1
Information 317341-24 -7.0
Financial Activities 1,5591,658-99-6.0
Professional and Business Services 3,9024,000-98 -2.5
Education and Health Services 9,1319,678 -547 -5.7
Leisure and Hospitality 5,1575,982-825-13.8
Other Services 1,1221,201-79 -6.6
Government 10,23810,359-121-1.2

Employment by Industry
Covered by Unemployment Compensation
(not seasonally adjusted)
Sep-20 Sep-19Change% Change
Total Employment8,341,5498,845,793-504,244-5.7
Natural Resources and Mining65,54761,2404,3077.0
Construction 558,903568,284-9,381-1.7
Manufacturing372,595 383,964-11,369-3.0
Trade, Transportation, and Utilities1,726,9281,779,099-52,171-2.9
• Wholesale Trade338,208336,089-13,819-3.9
• Retail Trade1,051,7691,090,983-39,214-3.6
• Transportation, Warehousing, and Utilities336,951336,0898620.3
Information 128,333137,129-8,796-6.4
Financial Activities 584,178586,822-2,644-0.5
Professional and Business Services 1,346,9571,390,765-43,808-3.1
Education and Health Services 1,279,8331,325,434-45,601-3.4
Leisure and Hospitality 941,2981,230,399-289,101-23.5
Other Services 248,291278,595-30,304-10.9
Government 1,081,5001,095.684-14,184-1.3

Population20192018Change% Change
CareerSource Heartland 213,327211,1232,2041.0
DeSoto County38,00137,3686331.7
Hardee County26,93727,168-231-0.9
Highlands County106,221104,9331,2881.2
Okeechobee County42,16841,6545141.2

Average Annual Wage20192018Change% Change
CareerSource Heartland $36,404$35,437$967 2.7
DeSoto County$37,921$36,488$1,433 3.9
Hardee County$35,948$34,934$1,0142.9
Highlands County$35,661$34,555$1,1063.2
Okeechobee County$37,225$37,077$1480.4

Note: All data are subject to revision.
Source: Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, Bureau of Workforce Statistics and Economic Research.

We needed to fill a new position and decided to seek help from CareerSource Heartland. Their staff member came out and listened to our needs to fill this position. Not only did they find someone, but someone amazing! We are truly grateful for the time they took listening to our needs for the right person. They carefully screened candidates for us and presented to us candidates that fit our job description… so the process of hiring a new employee was easy. We will continue to use them in the future as our business expands.

Bridget Koornneef
Tecnam US, Inc.

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CareerSource Heartland helped me, I know that they can help you…