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Unemployment rates rose in 95 Kentucky counties between November 2018 and November 2019, including Whitley and Knox, fell in 18, including Laurel, and stayed the same in 7 counties, according to the Kentucky Center for Statistics (KYSTATS), an agency of the Kentucky Education and Workforce Development Cabinet.

Whitley County’s unemployment rate increased from 4.2 percent in November 2018 to 4.8 percent in November 2019. Whitley County’s November unemployment rate was 0.3 percent higher than October’s unemployment rate.

Laurel County’s unemployment rate decreased from 4.3 percent in November 2018 to 4.2 percent in November 2019. Laurel County’s November unemployment rate was 0.1 percent lower than October’s unemployment rate.

Knox County’s unemployment rate increased from 5.1 percent in November 2018 to 5.4 percent in November 2019. Knox County’s November unemployment rate was 0.2 percent higher as October’s unemployment rate.

Bell County’s unemployment rate increased from 4.8 percent in November 2018 to 6.6 percent in November 2019. Bell County’s November unemployment rate was 0.2 percent higher than October’s unemployment rate.

McCreary County’s unemployment increased from 4.8 percent in November 2018 to 5.6 percent in November 2019. McCreary County’s November unemployment rate was 0.4 percent higher than October’s rate.

Fayette and Oldham counties recorded the lowest jobless rates in the Commonwealth at 2.9 percent each. It was followed by Shelby County at 3 percent; Boone, Campbell, Henry and Woodford counties, 3.1 percent each; and Carroll, Jessamine, Monroe, Pendleton, Scott and Spencer counties, 3.2 percent each.

Magoffin County recorded the state’s highest unemployment rate at 12.7 percent. It was followed by Harlan County, 11 percent; Leslie County, 9.7 percent; Letcher County, 8.4 percent; Lewis County, 8.3 percent; Breathitt and Martin counties, 7.2 percent; Elliott County, 7.0 percent each; Knott County, 6.9 percent; and Wolfe County, 6.8 percent.

Kentucky’s county unemployment rates and employment levels listed here are not seasonally adjusted because of small sample sizes.

The comparable, unadjusted unemployment rate for the state was 3.8 percent for November 2019, and 3.3 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.

Whitley County has a civilian labor force of 14,307 people with 13,622 employed and 685 unemployed. Statewide, Kentucky has a civilian labor force of 2,088,173 people with 2,007,785 employed and 80,388 unemployed.

Learn more about Kentucky labor market information at https://kystats.ky.gov/KYLMI.

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