Topeka Kansas’ jobless picture improved slightly, but the labor market continues to be stressed, officials said.
The September unemployment rate was 6.9 percent, down from 7.2 percent in August, and up from 4.6 percent in September 2008.
“Kansas continues to experience overall weakness in the labor market, as evidenced by continued declines in nearly all industries over the year,” said Tyler Tenbrink, labor economist with the Kansas Department of Labor.
“Some industries, such as manufacturing and professional and business services, are reporting substantial declines. Overall, the effects of the recession are still being felt in a significant way across the state,” Tenbrink said.
Manufacturing lost 26,400 jobs over the year, a 14.1 percent decrease with the majority of those losses in durable goods, especially the aerospace industry.
Professional and business services lost 13,400 jobs over the year, a 9 percent decrease.
Overall, Kansas businesses lost 59,700 jobs in the past year, a 4.3 percent decrease.
A total of 17,501 initial claims for unemployment benefits were filed in September, down from 20,677 initial claims for August and up from 12,703 in September 2008.
In September, 180,202 continued claims for unemployment benefits were filed, down from 222,219 continued claims in August and up from 109,253 in September 2008.
In Douglas County, the unemployment rate was 5.4 percent, down from 6.2 percent in August, and up from 4 percent in September 2008.