TALLAHASSEE, Fla. -

Florida's unemployment rate is now 9 percent.

Florida released jobless numbers for the month of March that showed that the unemployment rate dropped 0.4 percent from what it was in February.

The rate is now the lowest it has been since January 2009.
The month-to-month decline is the biggest in 20 years, according to state officials.

The news provides a boost for Gov. Rick Scott, who has made jobs a central focus of his administration. But it also could help President Barack Obama as he competes in the crucial swing state.

Florida's unemployment rate is still higher than the national average of 8.2 percent.

An estimated 836,000 Floridians are still out of work.