May 18, 2024

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Unemployment at Near Record Lows in Kansas

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Kansas’ unemployment rate continues to drop. Last week, the Kansas Department of Labor announced the latest numbers revealing the state’s unemployment rate now sits at 3.8 percent.

“This month’s labor report shows good news for Kansas with improvement in many key indicators, including a drop in the unemployment rate to under 4 percent” said Kansas Secretary of Labor, Lana Gordon

March’s 3.8 unemployment rate was lower than February’s 4.0. In March 2016, the Sunflower State’s unemployment rate was 4.1. The U.S. unemployment rate is 4.5 percent.

The labor report also adjusted February’s job gains. Kansas added 500 private sector jobs between February and March. In total, the report estimates Kansas gained 3,600 non-farm jobs last year. Since March 2016, the state added 4,600 private sector jobs.

Last week, the Kansas Consensus Revenue Estimating Group released revenue projections for the upcoming year. Their revised numbers show an anticipated increase in state revenues, shrinking the size of a projected KANSAS UNEMPLOYMENTbudget shortfall by about $50 million.

“We are seeing improvement throughout the Kansas economy,” Michael Austin, an economist for the Kansas Department of Labor, said. “Whether its jobs or wages, the Kansas economy is doing a little bit better than we were doing last year.”

One highlight of the recent jobs report, according to Austin, is hourly pay is improving.

“Hourly pay grew over 2 percent. That’s faster than inflation. That’s faster than price increases over the same time period,” he said. “That means the buying power of Kansans is growing. I hope we can continue to see wages grow by more than 2 percent and better than inflation.”

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