Economy

A survey out of Creighton University indicates that Kansas’ economy was down last month. KMUW's Sean Sandefur has more...

Kansas received a 49.7 on Creighton University’s monthly Business Conditions Index for May, down from 51.2 in April. The score means that for the first time this year, Kansas’ economy is thought to be shrinking.

The index is based on surveys from business owners across the state and is scored from zero to 100.

Flazingo Photos, flickr Creative Commons

A report from the Congressional Joint Economic Committee shows that private-sector job growth in Kansas has lagged behind other states in the region.

The Topeka Capital-Journal reports that Kansas came in fourth in its five-state region when measuring private-sector job growth since the 2007 start of recession.

When compared to the beginning of the recession, Kansas private-sector jobs had grown 1.6 percent.

Ahead of only Missouri, Kansas lagged behind Colorado, Nebraska, and Oklahoma.

neetalparekh, flickr Creative Commons

The Center for Economic Development and Business Research at Wichita State has just released the 2015 economic forecast for Kansas and Wichita. KMUW's Aileen LeBlanc has more...

Kansas employment growth numbers fell behind the national numbers for the last 12 months, gaining 1.1 percent to the nation's 2.1 percent.

However, employment in the Wichita metropolitan area grew by 0.1 percent.

The projections for 2015 are for service sector jobs in both Kansas and Wichita.

The report indicates that the city's biggest gains will be in education and health.

While exports declined by about 4 percent last year--from the $12.46 billion number in 2013--the state still posted the third highest annual export value in Kansas history.

Matt Keith with the Kansas Department of Commerce who released the report says that several key industries experienced strong growth in exporting last year, particularly manufacturing.

Abigail Wilson

Governor Sam Brownback is encouraging Kansas business owners to expand their enterprises and create new ones.

Governor Brownback met with entrepreneurs from around the state yesterday at the annual Small Business Day event organized by National Federation of Independent Business. The association includes 4,000 Kansas companies.

Brownback says the state's economy is still recovering from downturns in small aircraft manufacturing but is on a strong footing for growth.

wikipedia.org

Bombardier Inc. announced Thursday that it laid off 620 people in Wichita. The layoffs took effect that same morning. KMUW’s Abigail Wilson has more…

Bombardier says it's going to layoff about 1,000 employees from its Learjet business in 2015, including the 620 in Wichita. The Montreal-based company said the cuts are due to weak demand for the Learjet 85 business jet, despite a predicted rebound in the small- and medium-sized business jet market this year.

Photo courtesy of the Kansas Geological Survey

The recent drop in oil prices is translating into fewer tax dollars collected by the state of Kansas.

State lawmakers are already facing budget deficits reaching hundreds of millions of dollars.

Stephen Koranda reports on the "severance tax" that oil producers pay based on the price of crude oil.

When economists met in November to create a new revenue estimate for Kansas, they used a crude oil price of $80 per barrel.

Edmiston Oil Company

Gas prices are lower than they have been for years. On Jan.7th, you can pay $1.70 a gallon at several Wichita stations. There is hope that low prices will be a boom to the economy, but as KMUW's Aileen LeBlanc reports, the oil industry in Kansas is treading water.

"Kansas operators are price takers, not price makers," Jon Callen, Edmiston Oil Company President, says. "We just have to accept whatever the world price is going to be. If we lost total Kansas (oil) production, the world would never even notice it."

How does that compare globally?

wichita,edu

Wichita State University economists expect Kansas to add more than 24,000 jobs in 2015, most of them in service positions.

The university's Center for Economic Development and Business Research predicts slightly more than 1.4 million people will be employed in nonfarm sectors this year.

The expected new jobs represent a 1.8 percent increase over 2014. Employment growth in Kansas is close to the nationwide average.

Last year, employment increased by 1.5 percent across the U.S. and 1 percent in Kansas.

Kansas and other states that receive taxes from the production of oil and natural gas, could face budgetary challenges as prices fall.

Two taxes are tied to oil and gas prices and production: severance and property taxes.

The severance tax is a state levy on minerals extracted from the ground in Kansas, while property taxes are also collected by the state and most local governments on oil and gas wells.

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