Kansas economy

Over the last five years, almost 15,000 workers disappeared from the Kansas workforce.

During the same timeframe, the state is growing economically, with a recent monthly report showing 14,000 jobs created in the last year and unemployment at 3.3%. That’s below the national rate. 

Despite the good news, Kansas officials see a long-term challenge: having enough employees to fill the state’s jobs, especially in high-demand careers like nursing and accounting.

Zorin09 / Wikimedia Commons

CNBC has released their scorecard on the economic climate in all 50 states, and Texas took the top spot.

The news network ranked states on more than 60 measures of competitiveness, including workforce, quality of life, education, business friendliness and cost of living. Texas ranked number one overall, also ranking first in infrastructure and economy.

Kansas saw a bump in job growth last month.

The Kansas Department of Labor says the state gained 2,000 private sector jobs from March to April. Compared to April of last year, Kansas had nearly 18,000 more jobs in the private sector.

Emilie Doerksen, with the Department of Labor, says there have been jumps in job categories such as business services, transportation and warehousing.

“This is actually the first month that we’ve had significant over-the-year gains in the private sector in over a year,” Doerksen says.

Gov. Jeff Colyer signed an executive order Wednesday supporting the "Ban the Box" initiative.

The new order requires state agencies to remove a checkbox from their job applications that asks whether someone has a criminal record.

A monthly survey of business leaders suggests that in Kansas and other Midwestern and Great Plains states, business conditions worsened slightly in July, but should improve.

The Mid-America Business Conditions Index dipped by 6 points in July, falling to 56.6. Overall, the survey's index range is from 0 to 100; an index greater than 50 indicates an expanding economy.

Brian McGuirk / Flickr Creative Commons

Kansas Agland is taking a look at the agriculture economy from the perspective of farmers and farm implement dealers, who are finding ways to adapt.

An overabundant supply in wheat, corn and every other crop has pushed the prices of those commodities below what many farmers need to break even.

The Wichita Eagle

Kansas has traditionally had a lower unemployment rate than the nation at large. But that looks to be changing next year, if analyst predictions hold true.

As The Wichita Eagle reports, the latest numbers have Kansas at 4.4 percent unemployment, slightly lower than the national average. But the U.S unemployment rate just dropped once again, to 4.6 percent. Meanwhile, experts expect the Kansas unemployment rate to rise to about 4.7 percent in 2018 based on current data.

Federal Reserve Bank of Philadephia

Of late, the Kansas economy has been the worst in the country, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Kansas Sees Fourth Consecutive Month of Job Losses

Oct 21, 2016
Public Domain

Kansas’s unemployment rate has risen for the fourth consecutive month, reports The Lawrence Journal-World.

The jobless rate in the Sunflower State rose to 4.4 percent in September as the state lost an estimated 2,100 private-sector jobs.

Kansas Loses Jobs as U.S. Makes Gains

Aug 22, 2016
AP photo

While the U.S. at large gained workers at a healthy pace last month, unemployment in Kansas is on the rise again. Kansas shed 5,600 jobs last month, sending the unemployment rate up to 4.1 percent in July. That’s up from its level of 3.8 percent in June.

Kansas Sees Job Growth, But Unemployment Also Rising

Jul 27, 2016
Joe Ledford / Kansas City Star

Kansas gained almost five thousand jobs in June and now has record employment for the state, reports The Kansas City Star. But those numbers belie a more trouble state of affairs. Kansas had the seventh worst job growth rate in the country over the past twelve months. The state’s growth rate inched along at only 0.2 percent.

Juleann / Creative Commons

In regional news, Kansas is having trouble feeding itself. That’s deeply ironic, considering the state has long been seen as the nation’s breadbasket. A grassroots campaign is underway to prevent rural Kansans from going hungry. But state lawmakers aren’t doing much to solve the issue, reports The Hutchinson News.

Most of High Plains Sees Recent Economic Growth

Feb 15, 2016
www.philadelphiafed.org

Most US states enjoyed a strong economic finish to 2015, reports The Rural Blog. Among High Plains states, Kansas and Colorado experienced particularly robust growth of over one percent. In fact, these states had some of the fastest growth in the nation. Nebraska’s economy fell just short of the strong expansion in Kansas and Colorado, and Texas also experienced growth. Oklahoma’s economy remained unchanged.