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    November 2016

Employment growth trails peer metros

Last month we saw how our recent employment growth has slowed relative to previous years. Today we compare our growth to other metros and, unfortunately, it is not a pretty picture.

The Kansas City metro added just 8,000 jobs between September 2015 and September 2016. This is not a good year by our historic standards and is certainly not good relative to some peer metros.

The Denver metro is not too much larger than ours, but it has experienced remarkable employment growth in recent years. St. Louis is a bit of a surprise here. After struggling to add jobs its economy seems to have achieved some employment stability in the last few years. The Kansas City metro is larger than both Nashville and Indianapolis, but they are both enjoying more employment growth.

The usual caveats apply. This data is volatile and can vary widely month to month, but it is still a concern. In today’s high-tech economy, metros grow based on their ability to attract talent and grow jobs. Kansas City has a good mix of industries that should be creating jobs,so here’s hoping that we begin to climb the ranks in the months ahead.

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December 2, 2016, 8 a.m. to noon
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[The current number of jobs in the Kansas City metro as determined by the monthly Current Employment Statistics survey.]

Employment slid for a second consecutive month in September.

Chart comparing employment totals to prior years

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

The unemployment rate dropped to 4.4 percent in September, slightly higher than one year ago.

Chart comparing unemployment rate to prior years

Our 4.4 percent unemployment rate places us toward the higher end among our peer metro areas.

Chart comparing peer metros

Monthly job postings dipped below 20,000 for the first time this year.

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

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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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