Florida data

UF study finds modest rise in Florida’s Consumer Sentiment

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Florida’s Consumer Sentiment Index rose this month to 64, up three points from a revised mark of 61 in August, which was only two points higher than the record low of 59 set in June 2008, according to a new University of Florida survey.

“The increase in confidence this month was mostly a rebound from very low levels in August,” said Chris McCarty, director of UF’s Bureau of Economic and Business Research and Survey Research Center, which conducted the survey.

Dip in Florida Consumer Sentiment points toward recession

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Consumer Sentiment among Floridians decreased to a near-record low in August, according to a new University of Florida survey. This month’s mark of 62 is only three points higher than the record-low 59 set in June 2008.

Census: Florida is getting younger

Florida, once the nation's oldest state, is losing some of its gray.

Thanks to a lull in retiree migration and an increase in working-age adults, Florida has dropped three places to become the fifth-oldest state in the nation, according to census data released Thursday.

Wrapping up your back-to-school shopping? It's tax savings time

Summer is nearly over, school supply lists are out and Florida's sales tax holiday runs Friday through Sunday, giving all shoppers a break from the 6.5 percent added to store receipts.

That break is limited, but the limits have been raised this year: clothing that costs $75 or less, up from $50 last year; and school supplies up to $15, up from $10. Books, however, have been removed from tax-exempt status.

UF survey: Consumer Sentiment registers modest increase in July

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Increased optimism about making major purchases played a significant role in Consumer Sentiment rising two points in July to 68, according to a new University of Florida survey.

Four of the five components that make up the index increased or remained unchanged. The biggest improvement was in confidence to purchase big-ticket items such as cars and appliances which rose five points to 77.

Debt crisis frustrates area residents

WASHINGTON — With the clock ticking down, our leaders still haven't cut a deal on the debt ceiling. Boynton Beach retiree Gerald Levine, 80, believes he knows exactly who's to blame. The problem is: it's a long list.

"If I had my druthers, I'd fire everybody in Washington," he said Wednesday. "Here we are, two weeks away from a default, which would be an economic disaster of immeasurable proportion, and they think it's a joke."

Republicans in Washington, Tallahassee push tax breaks to create Florida jobs

WASHINGTON ——

Gov. Rick Scott and Florida Republicans in Congress are betting that tax breaks and government spending cuts will spark widespread hiring in their job-starved state.

Florida consumers' funk hurts economy

Florida's consumers are financially queasy.

For two years, they have bobbed along in a sea of anxiety. Shaken by job losses and sagging home values, their unease is reflected in the monthly Consumer Sentiment reports produced by the University of Florida's Survey Research Center.

Smaller checks for government workers

State budget cuts will begin draining millions of dollars out of the local economy this month as government employees see their paychecks shrink.

The average government worker in Sarasota, Manatee and Charlotte counties will lose $1,151 annually as the state, for the first time since 1974, requires workers to help cover their own pension costs.

Orange expected to lead Florida growth

Emptiness is what people see today when they drive through the monogrammed iron gates of Lake Drawdy Reserve in east Orange County. There are paved cul-de-sacs, lakefront lots and fancy frosted-glass streetlights. But nobody lives there.

Thirty years from now, they will likely see 28 upscale homes occupied by young families, residents from abroad, refugees from coastal counties, in-migrants from other states and well-to-do retirees.

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