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    March 2016

New data shows KC metro employment at an all-time high

The latest employment data release includes good news for the the Kansas City region on a couple of fronts. First of all, the latest employment figure (January 2016) is 1,055,700. This marks an all-time high for us. Secondly, the data has been revised for December, showing that employment remained steady at the end of 2015 and did not flag as previously suggested. This data seems to match the positive economic vibe the region is feeling.

On a year-over-year basis, the region added 22,400 new jobs. Our employment by industry infographic shows that strong growth in manufacturing, professional business services and health is driving regional employment.

The metro unemployment rate rose to 4.4 percent, but it is still well below the 5.9 percent level we were at one year ago. This rate puts us squarely in the middle among our peers.

New want ads data suggests the employment growth will continue, with a spike to more than 80,000 new help-wanted ads in January. But keep in mind that these new ads capture both the new jobs being created and the jobs that come open because of job churn.

This data release is good news for Kansas City. We will see if the good news continues. The February data will be available in early April.


[The current number of jobs in the Kansas City metro as determined by the monthly Current Employment Statistics survey.]

2016 started with employment at an all-time high at 1,055,700 jobs.

Chart comparing employment totals to prior years

[The number of unemployed as a percent of the total labor force, not seasonally adjusted.]

Kansas City's unemployment rate (not seasonally adjusted) rose to 4.4 percent, but is still well below the rate one year ago (5.9 percent).

Chart comparing unemployment rate to prior years

At 4.4 percent unemployment, the metro is in the middle of the pack compared to its peers.

Chart comparing peer metros

Job postings spiked in January, climbing above 80,000.

Chart comparing job postings to prior years

Most recent Employment by Industry infographic

Employment by Industry Infographic
(Click to enlarge)

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

Upcoming Events

2016 RWIN Meeting Schedule
March 2, 2016
May 4, 2016
July 6, 2016
September 7, 2016
(All meetings at 10 a.m. at the MARC Conference Center)

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Mid-America Regional Council | 600 Broadway, Suite 200 | Kansas City, MO 64105 | Ph. 816-474-4240 |
Data sources: Kansas Department of Labor, Missouri Economic Research and Information Center (MERIC), The Conference Board and EMSI.
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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