Wichita State University’s Center for Economic Development and Business Research has developed indices to measure the general current economic conditions in each of Kansas’ sixteen micropolitan statistical areas. Each index is designed to provide a broad perspective on the local economy for each of these micropolitan areas throughout the state.
The indices are based on local employment, unemployment rates, inflation-adjusted retail sales, and manufacturing wages, while also taking into account statewide performance in the oil and farm sectors in the areas where those sectors are relevant to the local economy. Generally, increasing values for a micropolitan area’s index indicate improving economic conditions.
CEDBR has released its 2019 employment forecast for Kansas, Wichita, Topeka, and Kansas City. In Kansas growth is expected to resume in 2018 after a small decline in 2017. Employment growth is expected to be 1.3 percent in 2018 before slowing down slightly in 2019 with a forecasted employment growth of 1 percent. In Wichita employment fell by approximately 2,500 workers in 2017, this employment fall is expected to flatten in 2018 with a small contraction of 200 jobs. CEDBR forecasts growth will resume in 2019 with growth of 0.8 percent. Employment in Topeka fell by 0.7 percent in 2017 after several years of growth. Employment is expected to fall slightly in 2018, losing approximately 100 jobs. In 2019, employment is forecasted to grow by 0.3 percent and add almost 300 jobs to the local economy. The Kansas City area grew by 1.6 percent in 2017 following several years of strong employment growth. Growth is expected to continue in 2018 with an addition of almost 18,500 jobs. In 2019 Kansas City is forecast to grow by 1.4 percent, an addition of more than 15,000 jobs.
2018 Kansas Economic Policy Conference
The Institute for Policy & Social Research at the University of Kansas is pleased to announce the program for the 2018 Kansas Economic Policy Conference. This year, the KEPC will explore the theme of “Pragmatic Policy: Reforming Kansas Taxes.” In an afternoon policy conversation, Representatives Steven Johnson, Kansas House District 108 and Chair, Taxation Committee and Kristey Williams, Kansas House District 77 and Member, Taxation Committee will discuss The Give and Take of Tax Reform.Jim McLean, Managing Director of the Kansas News Service, will moderate the discussion.
The morning keynotes will describe Kansas’ Wild Tax Ride: Where We Are Now and Where We Should Be Headed with remarks from Chris Courtwright, Principal Economist at the Kansas Legislative Research Department, and Tami Gurley-Calvez, Associate Professor in Health Policy and Management at KU Medical Center. Later, Jim McLean will host a conversation on Local Implications of State Taxes with Hannes Zacharias, Professor of Practice in the School of Public Affairs and Administration at KU, and Cherise Tieben, the City Manager of Dodge City. The morning will wrap up with insights on Taxation and School Finance from Jacob Fowles, Associate Professor in the School of Public Affairs and Administration at KU and Brad Homman of Solomon USD 393 School Board and County Administrator of Dickinson County.
Mark your calendar for October 25 and join academics, business leaders, and policy makers in the discussion on tax policy and reform for Kansas.
Kansas Union, The University of Kansas, Lawrence, Kansas, with live online streaming available.
From June 2018 to July 2018, the WSU Current and Leading Indices both increased
The U.S. inflation rate increased from July to August 2018 while the Midwest rate declined over the same period.
The unemployment rate for Kansas, as a whole, decreased from July to August 2018. Wichita, Topeka, Lawrence, and Manhattan unemployment rates all decreased.
Current Unemployment Rate
Beginning in 2011, the Census Bureau began publishing the Supplemental Poverty Measure (SPM), which extends the official poverty measure by taking account of many of the government programs designed to assist low-income families and individuals that are not included in the official poverty measure. In Kansas, the SPM is 3.3% lower than the official poverty rate.