Florida Workers Owed Billions in Unpaid Overtime
According to a wages study done by law firm Bisnar Chase, the average Florida employee in the private sector worked about 2.5 hours of “unpaid overtime” per week during 2022. The national average for unpaid OT is 2.1 hours. When this figure is applied to the number of exempt workers in the Sunshine State (and based on the median wage), and then annualized, Florida workers are collectively owed about $11.4 billion in backpay, researchers said.
U.S. Economy Adds Half-Million Jobs in January
“The employment picture started off 2023 on a stunningly strong note, with nonfarm payrolls posting their strongest gain since July 2022,” CNBC reports. “Nonfarm payrolls increased by 517,000 for January, above the Dow Jones estimate of 187,000. The unemployment rate fell to 3.4% vs. the estimate for 3.6%.”
It’s the Economy’s Great, Stupid!
An estimated 166,000 Americans filed initial unemployment claims last week, down nearly 5,000 claims from the previous week and better than analyst projections of 200,000. It is the lowest figure since November 1968 (and the second-lowest since weekly reporting began in January 1967). Continuing claims rose slightly by 17,000 to 1.52 million, coming two years after the number of claims reached an all-time high of 6.1 million in April 2020.
The decline shows employers are limiting layoffs in a tight labor market. Roughly 1.8 job openings are available for every unemployed worker; the unemployment rate stood at 3.6% in March, just above the prepandemic level of 3.5%. Nearly 4.4 million workers left their jobs in February, a number that has held steady as employers try to fill job openings.
The figure represents the third consecutive week that new claims fell below 200,000.