Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary October 2018 unemployment rate was 4.5 percent, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics (KYSTATS), an agency within the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet. The unemployment rate for October 2018 was unchanged from September 2018.
The preliminary October 2018 jobless rate was down 0.1 percentage points from the 4.6 percent recorded for the state in October 2017.
The U.S. seasonally adjusted jobless rate for October 2018 was 3.7 percent, also unchanged from September 2018, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.
Labor force statistics, including the unemployment rate, are based on estimates from the Current Population Survey of households. The survey is designed to measure trends in the number of people working. It includes jobs in agriculture and individuals who are self-employed.
Kentucky added 1,590 individuals to its civilian labor force in October 2018. This brings the state’s labor force to 2,075,251. The number of people employed in October was up by 193, while the number unemployed increased by 1,397.
“Kentucky’s employment situation was relatively unchanged in October,” said University of Kentucky’s Center for Business and Economic Research (CBER) Associate Director Mike Clark, Ph.D. “While both the number of people working and the number of people unemployed increased, these increases were not statistically significant.”
In a separate federal survey of business establishments that excludes jobs in agriculture and people who are self-employed, Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment decreased by 2,200 jobs in October 2018 compared to September 2018. Kentucky has added 10,400 jobs since October 2017, a 0.5 percent employment growth.
Nonfarm data is provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Current Employment Statistics program. According to this survey, five of Kentucky’s 11 major nonfarm North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) job sectors saw employment increases from the previous month while five declined and one was unchanged.
Kentucky’s manufacturing sector increased by 1,600 jobs from September 2018 to October 2018, a gain of 0.6 percent. Durable goods manufacturing increased by 1,100 jobs, accounting for approximately two-thirds of the rise in total manufacturing. Employment in nondurable goods manufacturing added 500 jobs in October. Kentucky’s manufacturing employment was up by 3,000 since October 2017.
The financial activities sector added 600 jobs from September 2018 to October 2018. This sector gained 2,400 jobs since last October. Within the sector, the finance and insurance subsector added 200 jobs and the real estate, rental and leasing subsector added 400 jobs.
Employment in the other services sector was up by 300 positions from September 2018 to October 2018. Other services rose by 900 jobs from a year ago for a growth rate of 1.4 percent since October 2017. Other services sector includes repairs and maintenance, personal care services and religious organizations.
Employment in Kentucky’s construction sector grew by 100 jobs from September 2018 to October 2018, an increase of 0.1 percent. Over the past 12 months, construction employment is up by 100 positions.
Employment in Kentucky’s mining and logging sector rose by 100 jobs from September 2018 to October 2018. Employment in this sector is up 300 positions since October 2017.
Trade, transportation and utilities sector was unchanged in October 2018, but has grown by 7,400 positions or 1.8 percent since October 2017. Wholesale trade added 400 positions in October 2018. Transportation, warehousing, and utilities gained 900 jobs. These gains were offset by a decrease of 1,300 jobs in the retail subsector.
“Employment in Kentucky’s transportation, warehousing, and utilities subsector continues to grow steadily, showing gains in ten of the past twelve months,” said Clark. “Since October 2017, employment in this subsector is up 7,700 jobs.”
Employment in the professional and business services sector lost 2,300 jobs from September 2018 to October 2018, a loss of 1.1 percent. This sector is down 100 jobs since October 2017. The job losses were concentrated in the administrative and support and waste management subsector, which lost 3,000 jobs. Employment in the professional, scientific, and technical services subjector added 400 positions. Employment in the management of companies increased by 300 jobs.
“The administrative and support and waste management subsector tends to show significant swings in employment from month-to-month,” said Clark. “However, the overall trend for employment in this subsector has been relatively flat.”
The government sector decreased by 1,300 jobs in October 2018. Federal government employment increased by 200 jobs; state government employment was unchanged; and local government declined by 1,500 jobs. Total government employment is down 500 since October 2017.
The leisure and hospitality sector decreased by 1,000 jobs from September 2018 to October 2018. The decline occurred entirely in the accommodations and food service subsector, which fell by 1,000 jobs in October 2018. Employment in the arts, entertainment and recreation subsector was unchanged in October. Since October 2017, leisure and hospitality has lost 2,800 positions or 1.4 percent.
Information services sector lost 200 jobs in October 2018. This sector has declined by 600 jobs since October 2017. The industries in this sector include traditional publishing as well as software publishing; motion pictures and broadcasting; and telecommunications.
Education and health services sector lost 100 jobs in October 2018. Within this sector, health care and social assistance added 200 jobs and educational services lost 300 jobs. Employment in education and health services for October 2018 was up 300 since a year ago.
Civilian labor force statistics include nonmilitary workers and unemployed Kentuckians who are actively seeking work. They do not include unemployed Kentuckians who have not looked for employment within the past four weeks.
Kentucky’s statewide unemployment rate and employment levels are seasonally adjusted. Employment statistics undergo sharp fluctuations due to seasonal events, such as weather changes, harvests, holidays and school openings and closings. Seasonal adjustments eliminate these influences and make it easier to observe statistical trends. However, because of the small sample size, county unemployment rates are not seasonally adjusted.
Learn more about Kentucky labor market information at http://kystats.ky.gov/KYLMI.