As the local economies of tourism-reliant Florida have taken a significant hit from COVID-19, Tampa is in the best shape among the state’s large metros.
Tampa, like much of the country, turned to job loss in recent months. The market lost 129,000 jobs in the year-ending April. These cuts translated to employment loss of roughly 9%, which was the mildest downturn across the big Florida markets. Miami’s loss was closer to 12%, while Orlando, Fort Lauderdale and West Palm Beach each lost 14% of their job base.
Recent employment cuts were quite a change for Tampa. From 2011 through 2019, this market was adding an average of about 31,000 jobs annually. Growth peaked in 2015 and 2016, when expansion topped 40,000 jobs per year.
In fact, Tampa got off to a good start in 2020. Annual job additions were still coming in at hefty levels in January through March. In the month of April, however, the nation’s economy was pulled downward as a result of the layoffs among the COVID-19 pandemic.
Following the pattern seen in most spots across the nation, Tampa saw steep losses in the Leisure and Hospitality sector recently. Cuts also are sizable in the Trade category as well as in Health Care.
Helping keep Tampa afloat in these unprecedented times, Tampa has fewer Hospitality jobs than other Florida markets. Instead, Tampa is heavy on back-office Professional Services positions, which have proven resilient during the recession, as they can be performed in a work-from-home environment.
For more information on the Tampa apartment market, watch the RealPage webcast, Up Close and Local: Tampa.