May unemployment rate remains mostly unchanged

Published 8:00 am Friday, June 21, 2024

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Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary May 2024 unemployment rate was 4.6 percent, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics (KYSTATS), an agency within the Kentucky Education and Labor Cabinet.

That figure, released on Thursday, is unchanged from April but represents a half-percent rise from a year ago. Meanwhile, the U.S. seasonally adjusted jobless rate for May 2024 was 4%, which was up from the 3.9% recorded in April, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Kentucky’s civilian labor force was 2,040,591 in May 2024, an increase of 6,627 individuals from last month. The number of people employed in May increased by 5,258 to 1,946,032 while the number unemployed increased by 1,369 to 94,559.

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

“Kentucky saw its labor force increase over the past four months,” said University of Kentucky’s Center for Business and Economic Research (CBER) Director Mike Clark. “Even as more people join the workforce, we see more people finding jobs. This employment growth helped Kentucky’s unemployment rate hold steady at 4.6% in May.”

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 increased by 3,900 jobs to 2,042,000 in May 2024 compared to April. Kentucky’s nonfarm employment was up 26,900 jobs or 1.3% compared to May 2023.