economy

TOPEKA, Kansas — Protesters angry about the stay-at-home order in Kansas and the tens of thousands of people it’s tossed from work rallied at the state Capitol Thursday.

They clogged traffic on the four blocks that ring the Statehouse for more than an hour, honking on horns, calling out slogans on bullhorns and pressing Gov. Laura Kelly to reopen businesses in the state.

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Spirit AeroSystems says it will begin a “phased-in return to work” for some of its furloughed employees.

The statement follows an announcement Thursday by Boeing that it will resume commercial airplane production at its Seattle-area facilities next week.

“As our customer Boeing begins to resume production, Spirit AeroSystems will work with our employees, customers and suppliers to begin a phased-in return to work for some furloughed employees,” Spirit said in a statement.

Andrea Klinke Johannsen / flickr Creative Commons

An employment forecast released Thursday projects continued economic growth for both the Wichita area and Kansas next year.

Wichita State University’s Center for Economic Development and Business Research (CEDBR) conducts industry-level employment surveys each year to help formulate its forecasts.

CEDBR Director Jeremy Hill says the Wichita area is expected to grow about 0.5% in 2020, adding about 1,600 new jobs. The workforce expanded by 1.3% this year.

He says the slow job growth pattern is a turnaround from 2017 when the region lost jobs.

Textron Aviation

The Kansas economy has been sluggish the past few years, but the candidates running for governor each have a plan to jumpstart things.

Will any of them actually work?

wichita.edu

The Wichita Community Foundation has created a $1 million fund to help the city deal with workforce issues.

The Talent Ecosystem Fund is meant to attack challenges identified by the Focus Forward project, according to a news release. Among those challenges is attracting a talented workforce to Wichita.

Grant Gerlock / Harvest Public Media/File photo

The farm economy is showing some stability, the U.S. Department of Agriculture says, but the upswing doesn’t extend to all agricultural sectors.

J. Schafer / Kansas Public Radio/File photo

new estimate from the Emporia State Economic Index shows Kansas’ economy started to level off in October. 

The GDP for the state shrank slightly by 0.1 percent from September. That follows months of strong growth after a low point in March. There is some positive news: Kansas' GDP grew 1.7 percent since October 2016.

An economic expert says changes to the international trading system could slow down manufacturing exports in the Wichita area.

Jeremy Hill  is the director of the Center for Economic Development and Business Research at Wichita State. He released the 2018 employment forecast earlier this month.

Hill says despite a growing global economy government trade policies and restrictions could impact exports.

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The employment forecast for the Wichita area shows little to no job growth in 2018.

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A monthly survey of business leaders suggests that in Kansas and other Midwestern and Great Plains states, business conditions worsened slightly in July, but should improve.

The Mid-America Business Conditions Index dipped by 6 points in July, falling to 56.6. Overall, the survey's index range is from 0 to 100; an index greater than 50 indicates an expanding economy.

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