The Paycheck Protection Program appears to have been a relative success in Florida. Despite fraudsters like the guy in Miami who stole $4 million in PPP money and bought a Lambo with it, over three million jobs were saved in our state. This according to data from the Small Business Administration. In fact, on a relative basis, Florida's small businesses appear to have benefited the most from the program. Florida is the third-most populous state and we have the third most small businesses, 2.5 million. It stands to reason that we’d have the third most saved jobs from the program and that’s the case.
According to the SBA, 3.2 million jobs were saved in Florida due to the PPP. So why did Florida benefit the most? Florida’s small businesses had the highest rate of success in receiving PPP funds. With an approval rate of 96% for small businesses that applied, no state had a higher percentage of businesses approved. This is a credit to Florida’s small business owners and banks alike. And how big of a deal is 3.2 million jobs saved? It’s huge. In June there were 8.4 million non-agricultural jobs in Florida according to the Florida Department of Economic Opportunity. This means 38% of Florida’s current jobs wouldn’t be around today if not for the program. That’s the highest percentage of saved jobs of any large state in the country.
Now for some other perspective. How much is a saved job worth? We now know how much was spent to retain a job thru June. With $519 billion in PPP money paid out through June, 50.68 million jobs were saved. That means taxpayers spent $10,241 per job saved. Is that efficient? Is it not efficient? I guess that’s a somewhat subjective and for another conversation. For now, I’m glad Florida benefited the most from the program. Let’s hope those saved jobs become permanently retained jobs.
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