Kentucky records lowest monthly jobless rate since 1976 in latest state unemployment report

Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary unemployment rate in April 2022 was 3.9%, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics (KYSTATS).

The April 2022 preliminary unemployment rate was down 0.1 percentage points from the 4% reported in March 2022 and down 0.8 percentage points from the 4.7% recorded for the state one year ago.

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

Labor force statistics, including the unemployment rate, are based on Current Population Survey household estimates. The survey is designed to measure trends in the number of people working and includes jobs in agriculture and the self-employed.

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Kentucky’s civilian labor force was 2,062,821 in April 2022, an increase of 2,625 people from March 2022. The number of people employed in April increased by 5,080 to 1,983,027 while the number of unemployed decreased from 2,455 to 79,794.

“In April, Kentucky recorded its lowest unemployment rate since the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics began publishing state rates in 1976,” said Mike Clark, Ph.D., director of the Center for Business and Economic Research (CBER) at the University of Kentucky. “This low unemployment rate was driven by two factors. First, businesses continue to experience strong demand for their goods and services and are hiring additional workers to help meet that demand. Second, while workers have steadily returned to the workforce as wages rise and health problems ease, the number of people in the labor force in April was still below the pre-pandemic peak in the month. ‘State. The strong demand for workers and the still somewhat reduced availability of workers have created a tight labor market with low unemployment.

In a separate federal survey of business establishments that excludes agricultural and self-employed employment, Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment increased by 2,700 jobs in April 2022 compared to March 2022. Nonfarm employment of Kentucky increased by 59,000 jobs or 3.1% compared to April 2021.

“Employers in Kentucky continued to increase their payrolls last month,” Clark said. “As of April, Kentucky had recovered nearly 95% of the 296,000 jobs lost in the first months of the pandemic.”

Non-farm data are provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Current Employment Statistics program. Employment rose for five of Kentucky’s top North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) non-farm employment sectors in April 2022, the survey found, while five fell and one remained. unchanged.

Manufacturing employment in Kentucky rebounded after falling in March. Manufacturers increased their payrolls by 6,000 jobs in April. This represents a gain of 2.5%. Job gains occurred among durable goods manufacturers, which reported 6,800 more jobs in April than in March. Employment in non-durable goods fell by 800 jobs from March to April. Manufacturing employment in Kentucky has increased by 2,100 positions or 0.9% since April 2021.

“Manufacturing employment continues to fluctuate monthly,” Clark said. “Job fluctuations likely reflect continued volatility in supply chains.”

Employment in the professional and business services sector increased by 900 jobs or 0.4% in April 2022. Employment increased by 200 jobs in the professional, scientific and technical services subsector. The administrative and support and waste management subsector gained 800 jobs. The business management sub-sector lost 100 jobs. Employment in this sector has increased by 10,400 or 4.8% since April 2021.

Employment in the financial activities sector increased by 700 jobs in April 2022. Employment in the finance and insurance sub-sector increased by 600 jobs from March to April, while the real estate, rental and leasing increased by 100 jobs. The financial activities sector increased by 1,400 jobs compared to last April.

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Kentucky’s education and health services sector added 300 jobs in April 2022. All job gains were in the health care and social assistance subsector, which increased by 300 positions from March to April. Employment in the Educational Services subsector was unchanged from March to April. Since last April, this sector has increased by 3,800 jobs or 1.3%.

In the public sector, employment increased by 100 jobs from March 2022 to April 2022. Federal government employment increased by 100 jobs and local government employment increased by 400 jobs. The state government lost 400 jobs. The total public administration sector added 6,500 jobs or 2.2% compared to April 2021.

Employment in the information services sector remained unchanged from March to April. Industries in this sector include traditional publishing as well as software publishing; motion pictures and broadcasting; and telecommunications. The number of jobs in this sector increased by 900 or 4.4% compared to a year ago.

Kentucky’s mining and forestry sector lost 200 jobs from March 2022 to April 2022. Employment in this sector in April 2022 was down 200 positions from a year ago.

Employment in the other services sector fell by 500 positions in April 2022. This sector has lost 400 positions since April 2021. The other services sector includes repairs and maintenance, personal care services and religious organizations .

Kentucky’s recreation and hospitality industry cut 1,300 jobs from March 2022 to April 2022, a loss of 0.7%. This sector recorded an increase of 19,800 jobs or 11.2% compared to April 2021. The arts, entertainment and recreation sub-sector decreased by 700 jobs, and the accommodation and food services sub-sector fell by 600 jobs in April.

Construction employment fell by 1,600 jobs in April 2022, or 2.1% from March. The construction sector lost 2,200 jobs or 2.8% compared to a year ago.

The trade, transportation and utilities sector lost 1,700 jobs from March 2022 to April 2022. Retail trade employment fell by 2,100 jobs in April. Employment in wholesale trade was unchanged from March to April. Transportation, warehousing and utilities added 400 jobs. Since April 2021, employment in this sector has increased by 16,900 jobs or 4.1%.

“While declining employment in a sector is often associated with reduced demand, declining retail employment may reflect the difficulties that retail employers face in retaining and attracting workers. given the tight labor market,” Clark said.

Civilian workforce statistics include non-military workers and unemployed Kentucky workers who are actively seeking work. They do not include unemployed Kentucky workers who have not looked for work in the past four weeks.

Kentucky’s statewide unemployment rate and employment levels are seasonally adjusted. Employment statistics fluctuate greatly 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, due to small sample size, county unemployment rates are not seasonally adjusted.

To learn more about Kentucky’s labor market information, visit

Education and Workforce Development Cabinet

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