For the Wichita metropolitan area in March 2022, the major measures of the employment economy improved, although Wichita continues improving at a slow rate.
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Total nonfarm employment rose from 289,900 in March 2021 to 298,100 in March 2022, a gain of 8,200 jobs (3.8 percent). (This data is not seasonally adjusted, so month-to-month comparisons are not valid.) For the same period, employment in the nation rose by 4.6 percent. The unemployment rate in March 2022 was 3.6 percent, down from 4.8 percent the same month one year prior.
Considering smoothed seasonally adjusted data from the household survey, the labor force grew by 1,154 persons (0.4 percent) in March 2022 from March 2022, the number of unemployed persons fell by 131 (1.3 percent), and the unemployment rate was 3.3 percent, unchanged from February. The number of employed persons not working on farms rose to 310,212 in March 2022 from 309,189 the prior month, an increase of 1,023 persons (0.3 percent).
See my report for January 2022 for information about recent revisions to 2021 data.
The following chart of the monthly change in the labor force and employment in Wichita over the past year shows mostly gains.
As of March 2022, the Wichita MSA had 1,053 more jobs (0.3 percent) than in February 2020, the last full month before the start of the pandemic, and 42,823 more jobs (16.0 percent) than in April 2020, the first month after the beginning of the pandemic. These figures are from the smoothed seasonally adjusted series. The regular seasonally adjusted data is quite different, primarily because of the March 2022 number.
The following chart of changes from the same month one year ago shows Wichita mostly having more jobs than the year before. The labor force has varied up and down.
The following chart of changes in employment from the same month of the previous year shows the Wichita MSA generally following the national trend, although the recovery in Wichita has been slower than for the nation.
The following two charts show changes in jobs for Wichita and the nation over longer periods. The change is calculated from the same month of the previous year. For times when the Wichita line was above the nation, Wichita was growing faster than the nation. This was often the case during the decades starting in 1990 and 2000. Since 2010, however, Wichita has only occasionally outperformed the nation and sometimes has been far below the nation.
(For data on all metropolitan areas in the nation, see my interactive visualization Metro area employment and unemployment.)
The link to the archived version of the BLS news release for this month may be found here.