Unemployment rates fell in 102 Kentucky counties, stayed the same in five and rose in 13 counties between September 2016 and September 2017, according to the Kentucky Center for Education and Workforce Statistics (KCEWS), an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet.
Oldham County recorded the lowest jobless rate in the Commonwealth at 3.1 percent. It was followed by Fayette and Shelby counties, 3.2 percent each; Campbell, Jessamine, Scott and Woodford counties, 3.3 percent each; and Boone, Kenton, Monroe and Spencer counties, 3.4 percent each.
Magoffin County recorded the state’s highest unemployment rate at 12.9 percent. It was followed by Leslie County, 10.7 percent; Harlan County, 8.6 percent; Elliott County, 8.3 percent, Letcher County, 8.1 percent; Jackson County, 7.8 percent; Fulton County, 7.7 percent; Carter and Clay counties, 7.6 percent each; and Breathitt and Wolfe counties, 7.5 percent each.
Kentucky’s county unemployment rates and employment levels are not seasonally adjusted because of small sample sizes. 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. The comparable, unadjusted unemployment rate for the state was 4.3 percent for September 2017, and 4.1 percent for the nation.
Unemployment statistics are based on estimates and are compiled to measure trends rather than actually to count people working. Civilian labor force statistics include non-military 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. The data should only be compared to the same month in previous years.