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Kansas jobless rate stable at 2.7% in August, loses ground in private-sector employment

By: - September 15, 2023 11:59 am
A sign outside a business says "now hiring"

The Kansas unemployment rate stood at 2.7% in August, which was unchanged from July, and 0.1 percent lower than in August 2022. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

TOPEKA — The Kansas unemployment rate in August matched the July rate of 2.7% and was slightly lower than the jobless figure posted at this time last year, officials said Friday.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Kansas Department of Labor said the preliminary estimate for August showed stability in the month-to-month numbers was a comparative improvement over the 2.8% recorded in August 2022.

State and federal officials said surveys revealed nonfarm payroll, which included private sector and government workers, declined 4,100 in Kansas from July to August of this year. The private sector took the biggest hit with a decrease of 2,700 jobs, while the dip in government employment totaled 1,400.

Kansas’ largest gain in August occurred in manufacturing, which expanded by 800 jobs. The most significant loss was the exit of 1,700 jobs in business and professional services.

“The survey of employers shows a small decline in jobs over the month, but compared to last August total nonfarm job estimates have increased 1.3%,” said Emilie Doerksen, an economist with the state Department of Labor. “The household survey indicates little change in labor force estimates for Kansas in August, with the state maintaining a low unemployment rate at 2.7%.”

The federal agency handles the employer survey and the state labor department conducts the household survey.

Overall, Kansas added 18,000 nonfarm jobs from August 2022 to August 2023. Three-fourths of that amount or 13,600 jobs were in the private sector. Government payroll in the past year climbed 4,400 in Kansas. Officials said the state’s labor force in August was calculated to be 1.52 million and the number of employed individuals stood at 1.47 million.

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Tim Carpenter
Tim Carpenter

Tim Carpenter has reported on Kansas for 35 years. He covered the Capitol for 16 years at the Topeka Capital-Journal and previously worked for the Lawrence Journal-World and United Press International.