• 2017 Kansas & Wichita Employment Forecasts
  • Kansas Economy Data Website
  • Wichita Industry Research Exchange

Quick Links

Kansas Data Website Fiscal and Economic Impact Analysis Employment and Population Forecasts Labor Analysis Market Research Retail Gap Analysis  

Unemployment Rates Rising in Kansas

EmploymentThe unemployment rate for Kansas, as a whole, increased from December 2016 to January 2017. The Wichita and Manhattan MSAs saw an increase of 0.4 percentage points, while Lawrence and Topeka both increased by 0.3 and 0.5 percentage points respectively.

A slide presentation is available with additional employment and unemployment data for Kansas and its four metro areas.

View the January slide presentation.

Midwest Annual Inflation Down, February 2017

InflationThe Consumer Price Index is used to calculate inflation, or the change in price of a basket of goods and services, as it impacts consumers; whereas, the Producer Price Index measures changes in selling prices, thereby expressing price changes from the perspective of the seller who produces a particular commodity.

A slide presentation updated with February 2017 data shows the Midwest inflation rate decreased from January to February. While the urban metropolitan areas noticed a -0.61% decrease, the non-metropolitan urban areas saw a larger decrease of -1.08%. 

The Producer Price Index data shows that prices in the United States have decreased from February 2016 to February 2017 for aircraft (0.7 percent), crude petroleum (114.5 percent), and natural gas (56.7 percent). During that same time period, the index decreased slaughter livestock (-6.7 percent), sorghum (-2.1 percent) and wheat (-0.9 percent).

Access this slide presentation.

Learn more about the CPI.

Learn more about the PPI.

Kansas Gap Analysis: Legal Services Sales

The legal services sector includes offices of lawyers, attorneys, and notaries, as well as title abstract offices and other specialized legal and paralegal services, except arbitration services. CEDBR, as part of research on Kansas’ retail and service sector gaps, has analyzed sales in the legal services sector in every county throughout Kansas.

  • Total legal services employment in Kansas was approximately 13,300 in 2013, with employment of 19 in the median county in the state in this sector.  Johnson County, Sedgwick County, and Shawnee County had the highest total employment and sales in the sector in the state.
  • Only one Kansas county, Lane County, was identified as not having any establishments classified as legal services establishments in the dataset, which could indicate either a lack of legal services in those areas, or establishments classified in another service sector could also be providing legal services.  The county has a population of less than 5,000 people.

Read the full article.

Kansas Age-Reweighted Employment - Population Ratio

Misery Index in KansasIn both Kansas and the United States, both the employment-population ratio and labor force participation rate have declined sharply during the recession in 2008, and the ratio has remained well below pre-recession levels for both geographies.

  • The age-reweighted employment-population ratio for Kansas fell by 1.9 percent from 2005 to 2015.
  • Almost all of the decline in the U.S. employment-population ratio from 2005 to 2015 can be explained by changing age demographics, while changing age demographics can only explain half of the decline in Kansas’ employment-population ratio.
  • The reweighted employment-population ratio of other Midwestern states such as Iowa and Nebraska tended to outperform the national average from 2005 to 2015, while Kansas’ did not.

Read the full report.

Kansas Manufacturing: Transportation Equipment

Misery Index in KansasTransportation equipment manufacturing makes a significant contribution to the national economy. This subsector includes the production of motor vehicles, aerospace products, railroad rolling stock, and ship building.

There are two components of transportation equipment manufacturing with a significant presence in the Kansas economy. Aerospace product and parts manufacturing is a major driver in the state economy providing many high paying jobs. There is also a small group of motor vehicle body and trailer manufacturing firms in the state.

Read the full report.

Misery Index Decreases in U.S.

Misery Index in KansasBetween the third and fourth quarters of 2016, the general level of misery experienced by people in the United States decreased and remained below the 2015 level. This can be attributed to a decrease in the unemployment rate, that was partially offset by increases in inflation and a decrease in housing prices. The level of misery also decreased in Kansas in the fourth quarter but was above the 2015 level at the end of the year.

Within each of the metropolitan areas in Kansas, the level of misery is mixed.

The Misery Index, as calculated by the Center for Economic Development and Business Research (CEDBR), includes the following components:

  • The Consumer Price Index (CPI) from the Bureau of Labor Statistics
  • The House Price Index (HPI) from the Federal Housing Finance Agency
  • Unemployment Rates (UR) from the Bureau of Labor Statistics

Read the complete fourth quarter report.


Kansas Population Forecast: U.S. Comparison

The U.S. Census Bureau has published their population projections for the entire United States from 2015 to 2060 , and they project that the United States population will grow from 321.4 million to 416.8 million in that period. This represents 29.6 percent growth for the U.S. population, which is projected to expand more rapidly than the Kansas population.

Both the Kansas and the U.S. populations are projected to have positive growth rates throughout this period, with growth generally slowing over much of this period as well.

Read the complete article.

YouTube, Kansas Population Forecast

Profile of Unemployment Insurance Beneficiaries in Wichita, 4th Quarter 2016

Unemployment Insurance Wichita KansasThere was an average of 13,602 unemployed people in the Wichita metropolitan area in the fourth quarter of 2016, approximately 50 percent of whom collected unemployment insurance benefits. In the fourth quarter of 2016, there were approximately 6,811 people, age 16 and over, who collected unemployment insurance benefits. That is an increase of approximately five percent from the third quarter of 2016.

In the fourth quarter of 2016, four industries accounted for 64.2 percent of unemployment insurance beneficiaries in the Wichita area; construction, manufacturing, administrative and support and waste management and remediation services, and wholesale trade. Of these four high unemployment industries, only manufacturing currently has a proportionately low level of unemployment insurance beneficiaries, when compared to total employment.

Read the full Wichita unemployment insurance beneficiaries report.

Unemployment Rates See Slight Change in Kansas

EmploymentThe unemployment rate for Kansas, as a whole, remained constant from November 2016 to December 2016. The Wichita and Topeka MSAs saw an increase in unemployment by 0.1 and 0.2 percentage points respectively. The unemployment rate in Manhattan decreased slightly by 0.1 percentage points, while Lawrence remained constant.

A slide presentation is available with additional employment and unemployment data for Kansas and its four metro areas.

View the December slide presentation.

Current and Leading Indices on the Rise, January 2017

Current & Leading Indices From October to November, the WSU Current Conditions Index increased by 0.4 percent. The Current Conditions Index increased year-to-year by 0.9 percent from October 2015 to November 2016. In addition, the Leading Index is forecasting a 0.07 percent increase in economic activity over the next six months.

Read a further analysis of the monthly Index activity.

Access Index data.

Wichita General Aviation Shipments

In the last decade, as the chart indicates, general aviation shipments manufactured in the Wichita metropolitan area averaged 25.3 percent of the overall U.S. general aviation shipments. Although Wichita’s aircraft manufacturing industry experienced a significant downturn during the most recent recession, losing 13,400 aerospace product and parts manufacturing (APPM) employees, the percentage of U.S. general aviation shipments delivered from Wichita has continued to be higher than pre-recession levels.

Read more.

Wichita Cost of Living, Third Quarter 2016

Cost of Living Less in WichitaThe Council for Community and Economic Research released the third quarter Cost of Living Index for 261 urban areas. Wichita’s overall Index value was nearly 9 percent below the national average of 100. The most expensive urban area in which to live was New York (Manhattan), N.Y., with an Index value more than twice that of the national average. The least expensive urban area was McAllen, Texas, which was more than 23 percent below the national average.

Read more.

To subscribe to the Cost of Living Index report, or to learn more about The Council for Community and Economic Research, visit their website.

The Impact of Health Care Industries on Wichita Regional Economy

The Center for Economic Development and Business Research completed an economic impact study of health care and related industries in the Wichita metropolitan area. The study, prepared for and released by the Medical Society of Sedgwick County (MSSC), lists the healthcare and social assistance industry as second among the area’s top five industries.

Health Care Impact Study for Wichita MSA

Read the full report.

Visit MSSC's webpage.