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Kentucky jobless numbers hit record highs – Reuters


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Kentucky set a record unemployment rate in April, but it didn’t last long as May’s unemployment figure was even lower, according to information released Thursday by the Kentucky Center for Statistics, an agency of the Cabinet of education and workforce development. .

Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted provisional unemployment rate in May 2022 was 3.8%, down 0.1 percentage points from the 3.9% reported in April 2022 and down 0.9 percentage points from to the 4.7% recorded for the state a year ago.

The seasonally adjusted U.S. unemployment rate for May 2022 was 3.6%, unchanged from March and April, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

In a separate federal survey of business establishments that excludes jobs in agriculture and the self-employed, Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment fell by 5,500 jobs in May 2022 compared to April 2022. Kentucky non-farm payrolls increased by 48,100 jobs or 2.5% from May 2021.

Mike Clark, director of the Center for Economics and Business Research at the University of Kentucky, explained the apparent contradiction.

“The Household Survey indicated that Kentucky’s unemployment rate fell to a new low of 3.8% as people found jobs at a faster rate than they entered the workforce” , did he declare. “However, despite strong growth in professional and business services and health services, the employer survey indicated that Kentucky’s total nonfarm employment fell in May. Declines in durable goods manufacturing, retail trade and state government led to lower total employment for the month.

Clark pointed out, “Employment in Kentucky’s professional and business services sector increased 5.9% from pre-pandemic levels and has shown particularly strong growth in recent months. While some of this employment growth is likely coming from the increased use of temporary employees, much of it appears to be coming from new jobs in the professional, scientific and technical services subsector, which includes jobs in areas such as computer systems design, accounting and consulting services. .”

Manufacturing employment in Kentucky lost 2,800 positions from April to May, a decline of 1.2%. Manufacturers of durable goods lost 3,200 jobs in May, while manufacturers of non-durable goods gained 400 jobs. Manufacturing employment in Kentucky has declined by 2,400 positions or 1% since May 2021.

“Kentucky manufacturing employment continues to be volatile month over month,” Clark said.

Overall, the state’s civilian labor force was 2,064,679 in May, up 1,830 from April. The number of people employed in May rose by 2,799 to 1,985,786, while the number of unemployed fell by 969 to 78,893.

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