State jobless rate at 10.6%

Kentucky's unemployment rate dropped 0.7 percentage points in November to 10.6 percent, but it wasn't just good news that drove the drop.

Justine Detzel, chief labor market analyst for the state Office of Employment and Training, said in a statement that the state's economy continued to show "signs of stabilization," but the rate's drop came partially because people who have been unemployed for a long time stopped looking for work. And others took part-time work for economic reasons.

Kentucky's unemployment rate rose above 10 percent in May and has stayed above that ever since.

The rate a year ago was 7.2 percent.

Four of the 11 major industries tracked showed employment increases during the month while six decreased and one remained the same. Overall, the state lost 4,900 jobs in the month.

"This marks the 21st month in a row of year-over-year employment decreases and the seventh largest year-over-year drop on records dating back to January 1990," Detzel said.

The biggest increase — 2,000 jobs — came in the leisure and hospitality sector, reflecting the opening of a hotel, beverage service business and various restaurants, Detzel said.

The second-largest increase came in the professional and business services sector, which had an increase of 600 jobs.

Other sectors with employment increases were government and information.

The largest monthly losses came in the trade, transportation and utilities sector, with a decrease of 3,900 jobs.

The second-largest loss came in the hard-hit manufacturing sector, with 1,900 jobs lost in the month — bringing the total to 31,400 jobs lost since November 2008.