Education and Labor Cabinet Releases July 2022 Unemployment Report

EDITOR’S NOTE: Links to the unemployment rate chart and the employment chart are below.

FRANKFORT, Ky. (Aug. 18, 2022) —Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted preliminary July 2022 unemployment rate was 3.7%, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics (KYSTATS), an agency within the Kentucky Education and Labor Cabinet (KELC).

The preliminary July 2022 jobless rate was unchanged from June 2022 but was down 1.1 percentage points from the 4.8% recorded for the state one year ago.

The U.S. seasonally adjusted jobless rate for July 2022 was 3.5%, which was down from the 3.6% recorded in June 2022, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

Labor force statistics, including the unemployment rate, are based upon estimates from the Current Population Survey of households. The survey is designed to measure trends in the number of people working and includes jobs in agriculture and individuals who are self-employed.

Kentucky’s civilian labor force was 2,063,503 in July 2022, a decrease of 725 individuals from June 2022. The number of people employed in July decreased by 391 to 1,986,514 while the number of unemployed fell by 334 to 76,989.

“Kentucky’s unemployment rate held steady at 3.7% in July,” said University of Kentucky’s Center for Business and Economic Research (CBER) Director Mike Clark, Ph.D. “While estimates of the number of people employed and in the labor force decreased slightly in July, these numbers were not statistically significant different from the June estimates.”

In a separate federal survey of business establishments that excludes jobs in agriculture and people who are self-employed, Kentucky’s seasonally adjusted nonfarm employment fell by 11,400 jobs in July 2022 compared to June 2022. Kentucky’s nonfarm employment was up 45,400 jobs or 2.4% compared to July 2021.

“The estimate of Kentucky’s private sector employment increased in July,” said Clark. “However, these employment gains were offset by a large decrease in the preliminary estimate for local government employment.”

Nonfarm data is provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Current Employment Statistics program. According to the survey, employment increased for six of Kentucky’s major nonfarm North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) job sectors in July 2022 and decreased for five.

Kentucky’s educational and health services sector added 2,300 positions in July 2022. Employment in the educational services subsector increased by 100 jobs from June to July. The health care and social assistance subsector added 2,200 jobs in July. Since last July, this sector has grown by 7,900 jobs or 2.8%.

The trade, transportation and utilities sector gained 1,800 positions from June 2022 to July 2022. Employment increased by 1,600 jobs in the retail trade subsector; rose by 1,000 jobs in the wholesale subsector; and decreased by 800 jobs in the transportation, warehousing, and utilities subsector. Since July 2021, employment in this sector has increased by 13,100 jobs or 3.2%.

Construction employment jumped by 1,100 jobs in July 2022 or 1.4% from June. The construction sector was down 700 positions or 0.9% from one year ago.

“After declining during the first four months of the year, employment in Kentucky’s construction sector picked up over the past three months,” said Clark.

Employment in Kentucky’s professional and business services sector increased by 800 jobs or 0.3% in July 2022. Employment fell by 200 jobs in the professional, scientific, and technical services subsector. The administrative, support, and waste management subsector gained 900 jobs, and the management of companies subsector added 100 jobs. Employment in this sector was up by 13,700 jobs or 6.2% since July 2021.

Kentucky’s leisure and hospitality sector was up by 500 positions from June 2022 to July 2022, a gain of 0.3%. This sector expanded by 17,300 jobs or 9.5% compared to July 2021. Employment in the arts, entertainment, and recreation subsector decreased by 200 jobs from June to July. The accommodations and food services subsector added 700 positions in July.

Employment in Kentucky’s mining and logging sector increased by 100 jobs from June 2022 to July 2022,  and was up 100 positions from one year ago.

The information services sector was down 100 jobs in July. The industries in this sector include traditional publishing as well as software publishing; motion pictures and broadcasting; and telecommunications. The number of jobs in this sector was up by 800 positions or 3.8% from one year ago.

The financial activities sector lost 300 positions in July 2022. These losses occurred in the finance and insurance subsector, which was down 300 jobs from June to July. Employment in the real estate, rental, and leasing subsector did not change from June to July. The sector was up 1,000 jobs compared to last July.

Employment in the other services sector was down 300 jobs in July 2022. This sector has declined by  1,200 positions since July 2021. The other services sector includes repairs and maintenance, personal care services and religious organizations.

Employment in Kentucky’s manufacturing sector fell by 2,600 positions from June 2022 to July 2022, a loss of 1.1%. The jobs losses occurred among the durable goods manufacturers, which were down 2,700 jobs in July. Employment among the non-durable goods manufacturers was up 100 jobs. Kentucky’s manufacturing employment was down 3,000 positions or 1.2% since July 2021.

In the government sector, employment dropped by 14,700 jobs from June 2022 to July 2022. Employment was up 200 jobs in the federal government and unchanged in state government. Local government employment decreased by 14,900 positions. Employment in the total government sector fell by 3,600 positions or 1.3% compared to July 2021.

“The July estimates suggest that Kentucky’s local government might have fallen back to levels similar to the first summer of the pandemic,” said Clark. “However, the estimates are preliminary and might be revised as more information becomes available. Estimates for August and September will provide a clearer indication of how local government, which includes local school districts, has changed.”

Civilian labor force statistics include nonmilitary workers and unemployed Kentuckians who are actively seeking work. They do not include unemployed Kentuckians who have not looked for employment within the past four weeks.

Kentucky’s statewide unemployment rate and employment levels are seasonally adjusted. Employment statistics undergo sharp fluctuations due to seasonal events, such as weather changes, harvests, holidays, and school openings and closings. Seasonal adjustments eliminate these influences and make it easier to observe statistical trends. However, due to the small sample size, county unemployment rates are not seasonally adjusted.

To learn more about Kentucky labor market information, visit


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