Education and Workforce Development Cabinet
Kentucky’s jobless rate increases to 10.7 percent in December

Press Release Date:  Thursday, January 21, 2010  
Contact Information:  Kim Saylor Brannock
(502) 564-1207
KimS.Brannock@ky.gov
 


Editor’s Note: Preliminary December and revised November labor market information are included in this release.

FRANKFORT, Ky.  — Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary unemployment rate rose to 10.7 percent in December 2009 from a revised 10.6 percent in November 2009, according to the Office of Employment and Training (OET), an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet.

December 2009’s jobless rate is 3.1 percentage points higher than the 7.6 percent rate recorded in December 2008 for Kentucky. The 10.7 percent rate recorded in December 2009 is the highest since October 2009 when the unemployment rate reached 11.3 percent.

The U.S. seasonally adjusted jobless rate remained at 10 percent from November 2009 to December 2009, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Unemployment statistics are based on estimates and are compiled to measure trends rather than actually to count people working.

Seven of the 11 major nonfarm North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) job sectors reported an employment increase in December 2009, while four decreased, according to OET. An increase of 100 jobs in December 2009 brought Kentucky’s nonfarm employment to a seasonally adjusted total of 1,764,500. Since December 2008, Kentucky’s nonfarm employment has plummeted by 59,300.

According to the seasonally adjusted employment data, Kentucky’s professional and business services sector jumped by 4,900 positions in December 2009. This area has gained 5,900 employees since December 2008. The professional and business services sector includes professional, scientific and technical services, management of companies and administrative and support and waste management, including temporary help agencies.

The government sector, which includes public education, public administration agencies and state-owned hospitals, rose by 700 jobs in December 2009. The sector has 3,600 fewer jobs compared to December 2008.

The financial activities sector increased by 500 positions in December 2009. This segment, which includes businesses involved in finance, insurance, real estate and property leasing or rental, has fallen by 4,700 positions over the past 12 months.

The state’s other services sector, which includes such establishments as repair and maintenance businesses, personal and laundry services, religious organizations and civic and professional organizations, added 300 positions in December 2009. This sector had the same number of jobs in December 2008 and December 2009.

The mining and logging sector gained 200 jobs in December 2009. The sector has added 800 workers since December 2008 because of hiring in the coal mining industry.

The educational and health services sector increased by 200 jobs in December 2009. The sector had 600 more workers in December 2009 than December 2008. This sector includes private and nonprofit establishments that provide either education and training or health care and social assistance to their clients.

The information sector added 100 positions in December 2009. This segment, which includes firms involved in publishing, Internet activities, data processing, broadcasting and news syndication, has decreased by 300 positions since December 2008.

Kentucky’s leisure and hospitality sector dropped by 4,700 jobs in December 2009. Since December 2008, employment in the sector has decreased by 4,800 positions. The leisure and hospitality sector includes arts, entertainment and recreation, accommodations and food services and drinking places industries.

The construction sector lost 1,100 positions in December 2009. Since December 2008, employment in the construction sector has fallen by 13,000 jobs.

Kentucky’s trade, transportation and utilities sector declined by 700 jobs in December 2009. This area includes retail and wholesale trade, transportation and warehousing businesses and utilities. It is the largest sector in Kentucky with 357,900 employees. Since December 2008, the number of jobs in this sector has plunged by 18,400.

Kentucky’s manufacturing sector fell by 300 jobs in December 2009. Compared to December 2008, jobs in the sector plummeted by 21,800.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ monthly estimate of the number of employed Kentuckians for December 2009 was 1,840,795 on a seasonally adjusted basis. This figure is down 5,035 from the 1,845,830 employed in November 2009, and down 64,633 from the 1,905,428 employed in December 2008.

The monthly estimate of the number of unemployed Kentuckians for December 2009 was 221,052, up 2,546 from the 218,506 Kentuckians unemployed in November 2009, and up 64,262 from the 156,790 unemployed in December 2008.

The monthly estimate of the number of Kentuckians in the civilian labor force for December 2009 was 2,061,847. This figure is down 2,489 from the 2,064,336 recorded in November 2009, and down 371 from the 2,062,218 recorded in December 2008. 

Civilian labor force statistics include non-military 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 the Office of Employment and Training at www.workforce.ky.gov.

A complementary experimental hours and earnings series is available at http://www.bls.gov/sae/saeaepp.htm.

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