Florida boasts five of the 10 hottest labor markets in the country, according to a recent Bizjournals study. The five:
- Cape Coral-Ft. Myers topped the list with a five-year job growth rate of 32.5 percent and the nation's lowest unemployment rate, 2.6 percent.
- Sarasota-Bradenton, in fourth place, also posted a record 2.6 percent unemployment rate and experienced job growth of 26.8 percent over the past five years.
- Orlando ranked fifth with more than one million jobs in mid-2006 and 17.3 percent job growth.
- Lakeland, with 216,300 jobs, was the smallest market in the top 10. It posted 16.1 percent growth and 3.4 percent unemployment to place seventh.
- Miami-Fort Lauderdale rounded out the top 10 with more than 2.4 million jobs and a five-year growth rate of 8.7 percent. Those five markets combined to add a half million jobs since 2001.
Final note: Tampa ranked 11th, driven like the other Florida markets by strong tourism and a steady flow of new residents.