Kansas employment situation, October 2022

In Kansas for October 2022, the labor force was steady, the number of people working rose, and the unemployment rate rose, all compared to the previous month. Over the year, Kansas has moved to the middle of the states in growth.

Data released from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, part of the United States Department of Labor, shows a mixed employment picture in Kansas for October 2022 when compared to the previous month.

Of special note this month: Considering year-over-year nonfarm job growth, Kansas no longer has the lowest value in the nation, as it had in some recent months. Now Kansas is near the middle of the states.

(Click charts and tables for larger versions.)

Using seasonally adjusted data, from September 2022 to October 2022, nonfarm employment in Kansas rose by 8,500 jobs (0.6 percent). Over the year, the number of Kansas nonfarm jobs for October 2022 was higher by 40,500 (2.9 percent) over the same month last year. This is using seasonally adjusted data.

Over the year (October 2021 to October 2022), the Kansas labor force rose by 3,706 people (0.2 percent) using seasonally adjusted data from the household survey, with a decline of 388 (0.0 percent) over the last month.

There are now 141,800 (11.1 percent) more jobs in Kansas than in April 2020, which is the low point since the pandemic’s start. There are 15,600 (1.1 percent) fewer jobs than in February 2020, just before the pandemic. These are counts of nonfarm jobs with employers in Kansas, without regard to the residence of the employee. Considering employed people from the household survey, there are now 153,419 (11.8 percent) more working people in Kansas than in April 2020, and 4,884 (0.3 percent) more than in February 2020. The household survey counts Kansas residents with nonfarm jobs, without regard to the location of the job.

The number of unemployed persons rose from September 2022 to October 2022 by 1,861 persons (4.7 percent). The unemployment rate was 2.8 percent in October 2022, down from 2.9 percent last October and up from 2.6 last month.

Comparing Kansas to the nation: Using seasonal data, the number of Kansas nonfarm jobs is 2.95 percent higher than 12 months ago, while nationally, the same statistic is 3.58 percent higher. Non-seasonal data shows the number of Kansas nonfarm jobs is 2.98 percent higher than 12 months ago, while nationally, the same statistic is 3.39 percent higher.

To learn more about this data and what the employer and household surveys measure, see Visualization: Employment measures. Also, see Counting jobs in Kansas.

Click charts and tables for larger versions.

Chart 3 shows job changes for Kansas and the nation from the previous month, and we can see both positive and negative changes for Kansas over the past year. The change for the nation was always positive.

Chart 4a shows job changes for Kansas and the nation from the same month one year ago. Note that the change for Kansas is always positive and usually significantly below that of the nation, although the gap has narrowed over the past three months.

In Chart 5, showing unemployment rates for Kansas and the nation, we see that the rate in Kansas is lower than the national rate during the pandemic, as it had been before the pandemic. Generally, the unemployment rate in Kansas had been slowly declining, although it has risen in some months and is little changed over the last six months. The difference between the Kansas unemployment rate and the national rate is becoming smaller.

Chart 6 shows monthly changes in the labor force for Kansas and the nation. The Kansas labor force has both expanded and contracted since the pandemic, as has the national labor force. The monthly changes for both are mostly small over the year except for a large increase for the nation in January and August.

For industry groups, the following charts (7a and 7c) show the number of employees in various industries in October 2021 and October 2022.

Chart 7b uses the same data but shows the percent change from October 2021 to October 2022. These industry groups have significant gains:

  • Information
  • Other Services
  • Leisure and Hospitality

These groups declined in employment:

  • Financial Activities

Government increased by a small amount.

The rate of job growth in Kansas over the year has been lowest in the nation in some recent months. In October Kansas rose to the middle, ranking twenty-seventh among the states and the District of Columbia. This rise in ranking was boosted by the strong growth in October over September, which at 0.6 percent ranked third. The following chart shows the monthly and annual change in the number of jobs in the states, along with the rank of the state.

The report for this month from the Kansas Department of Labor is here. The report from BLS may be found here. It appears there are no news releases or social media posts from Governor Kelly on this topic.

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