The Kansas City Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) saw a general uptick in jobs in the second quarter of 2012. Current Employment Survey (CES) data from The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) show an increase of 9,200 (0.5%) non-farm jobs in the 12 months ending in June 2012. This is slightly higher than the increases recorded in the 12-month period ending in March 2012 and reported in the previous Reis Observer. Once again, the Natural Resources, Mining and Construction sector lost jobs, posting a decline of 2,800 jobs (7.2%). Transportation and Utilities lost 600 jobs (1.4%). The Information sector lost 1,600 jobs (5.6%) in the 12 months ending in June.
Kansas City took a hit in a survey conducted by On Numbers, a blog affiliated with the Kansas City Business Journal. Reporting in early September, the Business Journal noted that the analysis placed Kansas City’s economy 65th out of 102 major metropolitan areas. The economic index determined rankings using 18 factors, including private-sector job growth, unemployment, average worker earnings and housing appreciation. “For Kansas City, On Numbers listed an unemployment rate of 7.5% and average worker earnings of $836.11 a week. Although the number of private-sector jobs declined by 2.83% during the past five years, the figure grew 0.58% during the past year,” the report stated. The area covered by Reis, the Kansas City Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA), straddles the states of Kansas and Missouri, with most of the population on the Missouri side.
In more uplifting news, the Business Journal reported in July that GE Capital Bank is opening a call center in Merriam the will employ 150 persons. “The bank leased 25,000 square feet in a building near 67th Street and Interstate 35 where GE Capital Retail Bank has a commercial location. The call center will begin operations in the fall, handling customer service functions, according to an announcement from the Kansas Department of Commerce,” the Journal reported. Bloomberg News reported in July that the Federal Reserve’s “Beige Book” described Kansas City as one of the regions in the nation that was advancing moderately. The Beige Book is an economic report used by the Federal Reserve to determine the state of the economy. The Beige book states that manufacturing activity continued to expand slowly, and that Kansas City, along with other metros, “cited slight increases in production levels.” BLS data indicate Manufacturing sector employment increased by 2,600 jobs (3.6%) in the 12 months ending in June. Professional and Business
Services had another strong performance, this time increasing by 6,100 jobs (4.0%). The substantially government-funded Education and Health Services sector saw a large gain of 1,200 jobs (0.9%). The Leisure and Hospitality sector saw an increase of 7,400 jobs (7.5%). Financial Activities employment fell by 1,200 jobs (1.7%). As in other metros, Government sector employment is down, here by 1,600 jobs (1.0%). Overall, CES data indicate that total private employment increased by 10,800 jobs (1.3%).