Employment

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Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary April unemployment rate slightly notched up to 5.1%. Despite the slight unemployment increase the number of employed is also up, suggesting more individuals are entering the labor market. 

The U.S. economy added 211,000 jobs to nonfarm payrolls in April, the Bureau of Labor Statistics says. The number is a sharp rebound from March, when fewer than 100,000 jobs were created.

Both the national unemployment rate, at 4.4 percent, and the number of unemployed people, at 7.1 million, saw only incremental changes last month, according to the bureau. By falling from 4.5 percent to 4.4 percent, the unemployment rate remains at low levels that were last seen in 2007, before the recession hit.

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The unemployment rate is up in every county in far west Kentucky compared to around this time last year.

Illustration by Alexandra Kanik

Women and people of color in the workforce earn less, on average, than do white, male workers. This ‘wage gap’ in the Ohio Valley region hovers around 20 percent. Becca Schimmel of the Ohio Valley ReSource explores why the gap persists and how it affects workers in an economy shifting toward more service sector jobs. 

Toyota already makes its popular Camry sedan in a massive plant in Georgetown, Ky., and the carmaker will spend more than a billion dollars there to update the way it builds the vehicle. The plant also recently added 700 jobs.

"Toyota's Camry is the best-selling car in America," NPR's Sonari Glinton reports, "and according to a survey by Cars.com, the Camry is the most American-made car, meaning it's made in the U.S. and so are most of its parts."

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Kentucky's unemployment rate was slightly down last month. The Office of Employment and Training says the seasonally adjusted preliminary rate for February was 4.9%. 

The U.S. added 235,000 jobs in February, while the unemployment rate nudged down a tenth of a percentage point to 4.7 percent. The monthly report released Friday by the Bureau of Labor Statistics fell roughly in line with economists' expectations: Healthy economic growth continuing January's strong showing.

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Kentucky's unemployment rate stayed at 4.8% in December.

The U.S. added 156,000 jobs last month and hourly wages rose by 10 cents, according to the monthly jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The unemployment rate was little changed; it ticked up slightly to 4.7 percent, compared to November's 4.6 percent.

Economists had been watching closely to see if the jobs report reflected a rise in wages.

Unemployment dropped by 0.3 percentage points, to 4.6 percent, last month — the lowest rate since 2007 — according to the monthly jobs report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

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