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    July 2013

Well, this is more like it.

Kansas City area employment surged in May to 1,008,300, a gain of almost 9,000 from April and 13,000 over last May. This marks the highest employment level we have seen in the metro since November 2008. Remember, we use seasonally adjusted data from the Current Employer Statistics, so this spike is not just from seasonal work.

Industry-specific data — which is not seasonally adjusted, so the totals will not match exactly — shows where we are adding these jobs. (See our recent infographic.) The leisure and hospitality industry has experienced the most growth over the past year, followed by the professional, scientific and technical and administrative support industries. Decline in employment were seen in retail and government.

Our unemployment rate seems to be locked in at 6.6 percent, where we've been for four consecutive months. Hidden in this figure is another good sign. We have a significant increase in employment and the unemployment rate remains steady, which can only mean that more people are entering (or re-entering the workforce). In recent years we have seen the labor force decline as discouraged workers stopped looking for work. So, even though the unemployment rate is unmoved, there is still a lot to feel good about in this new data.

The number of help wanted ads also appears to reflect employment growth. There were nearly 15,000 unique job postings in the Kansas City area in May.

While this month’s employment spike is certainly welcome, it may appear to be an anomaly when we look back on it later in the year. It's unlikely we will continue to add almost 9,000 jobs a month on a consistent basis. But for a change, the data seems to describe a region that is regaining its economic health. The is good news indeed.

Upcoming Events

Regional Green Jobs Task Force
July 23, 10 a.m., MARC offices

RWIN meeting
Aug. 7, 10 a.m., MARC offices

Annual Workforce Summit
Oct. 25, 8 a.m.–1:30 p.m., Kauffman Foundation Conference Center

About RWIN

MARC developed the Regional Workforce Intelligence Network to encourage greater collaboration among the region's workforce data and information professionals. RWIN is a collaboration of economic development professionals, one-stop centers, workforce centers, community colleges and universities that meets on a monthly basis. For more information, visit kcworkforce.com.


Funding provided by an
America Works Initiative grant
from the Walmart Foundation



[The number of people currently employed full or part time. It is not a count of jobs, as an employed person may have more than one job. Current Employment Statistics data.]

Local employment spiked in May, rising to 1,008,300. This marks the highest employment level for the region since November 2008.

[The number of unemployed as a percent of the total labor force.]

The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate held steady at 6.6 percent for the fourth month in a row.

Kansas City's unemployment rate appears stuck at 6.6 percent, but we remain firmly in the middle of the pack compared to peer metros.

May job positngs sit at 14,848, well ahead of May 2012.

Digital Storytelling Careers in the Kansas City metro

A new report published by MARC's KC Accelerator initiative provides data on digital storytelling jobs in Greater Kansas City.

Digital Storytelling involves the use of computer, digital and web technologies to create narrative solutions that are enhanced by their creative use of media. There are 34,743 Digital Storytelling jobs in the Kansas City region today, and that total is expected to grow by 15.2 percent by 2022.

The report also includes profiles of four people who work in this industry in Kansas City, and resources for training and education in the field.

KCEconomy blog: A rise in temporary employment

A new report from Economic Modeling Specialist International (EMSI), which says that 47 percent of our region's wage and salary employment growth between 2009 and 2013 has come from temporary employment.

By comparison, EMSI estimates that 15 percent of all job growth nationwide has been from temporary positions. Only five large metros have higher shares of temporary employment over the period than Kansas City.

So, what does it mean? Read the full post for more information.



Mid-America Regional Council | 600 Broadway, Suite 200 | Kansas City, MO 64105 | Ph. 816-474-4240 | marcinfo@marc.org
Data sources: Kansas Department of Labor, Missouri Economic Research and Information Center (MERIC), The Conference Board and Wanted Analytics.
Regional data includes Franklin, Johnson, Leavenworth, Linn, Miami and Wyandotte counties in Kansas and Bates, Caldwell, Cass, Clay, Clinton, Jackson,
Lafayette, Platte and Ray counties in Missouri.

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