Kentucky Business & Employment Growth Since 2009

  • 14,152 more businesses
  • 174,469 more employees
  • 10.2% increase in total wages
  • $8,309 increase in annual wages per employee
  • 21.9% increase in wages per employee

Since 2009, the number of businesses in Kentucky has grown by 13.1% (1.7% greater than the national average of 11.4%). Employment in Kentucky has grown by 10.2% (3.4% less than the national average of 13.6%). Wages have grown by 21.8% since the end of the Great Recession. This wage growth is 3.9% less than the national average of 25.7%.
The average weekly wage in Kentucky of $890 is 23.7% below the national average of $1,101. The gap between the national average has widened from 19.8% a widening of 3.9% since the end of the recession.

Sector Growth

Business Sector Growth

The Healthcare sector has the most businesses in the state of Kentucky. Since the end of the recession, the number of businesses has grown from 10,025 to 16,987, a gain of 69.4%. The table below illustrates the change in number of businesses in each sector.
Sector20182009Pct Chg
Healthcare16,98710,02569.4%
Retail trade15,61615,5380.5%
Professional services12,96510,45824.0%
Other services10,6929,33314.6%
Construction9,45010,108-6.5%
Wholesale trade8,6168,0147.5%
Accommodation and food services8,5577,36616.2%
Finance and insurance6,7976,6342.5%
Waste services6,7895,38226.1%
Manufacturing4,4404,449-0.2%
Real estate and rental4,2233,9157.9%
Transport and warehousing3,5033,4990.1%
Information1,7801,6209.9%
Arts and entertainment1,5111,36810.5%
Educational services1,13780042.1%
Agriculture and forestry1,09692918.0%
Company management75566713.2%
Mining and oil extraction458796-42.5%
Utilities2922727.4%

The sector that has had the strongest growth [in number of businesses] is the Healthcare sector, which has increased by 69.4% since 2009. The sector that has has the largest decline is the Construction sector, which has declined by 6.5% since the recession.

Employment Sector Growth

The Manufacturing sector has the most employees in the state of Kentucky. Since the end of the recession, the number of employees has grown from 213,308 to 251,626, a gain of 18.0%. The table below illustrates the change in number of employees in each sector.
Sector20182009Pct Chg
Manufacturing251,626213,30818.0%
Healthcare248,302215,95315.0%
Retail trade213,803201,8985.9%
Accommodation and food services174,792148,66217.6%
Waste services120,85082,39646.7%
Transport and warehousing104,37078,08433.7%
Construction77,96973,7005.8%
Professional services76,18269,19710.1%
Wholesale trade74,92772,2453.7%
Finance and insurance73,26569,0096.2%
Other services46,46345,5082.1%
Arts and entertainment23,17119,32519.9%
Information21,98027,088-18.9%
Company management20,38119,6953.5%
Real estate and rental19,62718,4746.2%
Educational services19,18015,78521.5%
Mining and oil extraction10,03623,291-56.9%
Agriculture and forestry8,5307,9217.7%
Utilities6,7746,6242.3%

The sector that has had the strongest employment growth [in number of employees] is the Waste services sector, which has increased by 46.7% since 2009. The sector that has has the largest employment decline in number of employees is the Mining and oil extraction sector, which has declined by 56.9% since the recession.

Weekly Wage Growth By Sector

The Company management sector has the highest average weekly wage in the state of Kentucky. Since the end of the recession, the average wage has grown from $1,568 to $1,973, a gain of 25.8%. The table below illustrates the change in weekly wage in each sector.
Sector20182009Pct Chg
Company management$1,973$1,5680.0%
Utilities$1,700$1,3660.0%
Finance and insurance$1,437$1,0340.0%
Mining and oil extraction$1,372$1,2160.0%
Wholesale trade$1,249$9820.0%
Professional services$1,239$9640.0%
Manufacturing$1,139$9230.0%
Information$1,051$8240.0%
Transport and warehousing$1,037$8640.0%
Construction$1,037$8330.0%
Healthcare$946$7760.0%
Real estate and rental$801$6200.0%
Agriculture and forestry$739$5820.0%
Educational services$675$6050.0%
Other services$646$5200.0%
Waste services$620$4830.0%
Retail trade$535$4490.0%
Arts and entertainment$439$3700.0%
Accommodation and food services$328$2590.0%

The sector that has had the strongest wage growth is the Unclassified sector, which has increased by 0.0% since 2009. The sector that has has the smallest wage growth is the Arts and entertainment sector, which has declined by 0.0% since the recession.


Industry Growth

Business Industry Growth

The Restaurants and other eating places industry has the greatest number of businesses in the state of Kentucky. This industry currently has 6,990 businesses in it. There is no direct comparison to the total at the end of recession and is not included in the table below.

Industry20182009Pct Chg
Services for the elderly and disabled6,3562320.0%
Private households4,1233,0250.0%
Computer systems design and related services3,1421,6630.0%
Offices of physicians2,8723,0770.0%
Offices of lawyers2,1522,1150.0%
Wholesale trade agents and brokers2,0413,1170.0%

The top industry that has had the largest increase in the number of businesses is the Services for the elderly and disabled industry, which has increased by 0.0% since 2009. The top industry that has has the largest decline in the number of businesses is the Wholesale trade agents and brokers industry, which has declined by 0.0% since the recession.

Employment Industry Growth

The Restaurants and other eating places industry has the greatest number of employees in the state of Kentucky. This industry currently has 149,055 employees in it. There is no direct comparison back to the total at the end of the recession and is not included in the table below.

Industry20182009Pct Chg
General medical and surgical hospitals70,58264,2130.0%
Temporary help services49,09129,3940.0%
Offices of physicians37,42832,7610.0%
Supermarkets and other grocery stores30,19428,9640.0%
Couriers and express delivery services29,98922,6810.0%

The top industry that has had the largest increase in the number of employees is the Temporary help services industry, which has increased by 0.0% since 2009. The top industry that has has the largest decline in the number of employees is the Supermarkets and other grocery stores industry, which has declined by 0.0% since the recession.

Weekly Wage Growth By Industry

The Commodity contracts dealing industry has the highest average weekly wage in the state of Kentucky. Since the end of the recession, the average wage has grown from $0 to $3,721, a gain of 0.0%. The table below illustrates the change in weekly wage in each sector.
Industry20182009Pct Chg
Investment banking and securities dealing$3,054$2,0010.0%
Portfolio management$2,499$2,3200.0%
Monetary authorities - central bank$2,452$1,0360.0%
Securities brokerage$2,325$1,4640.0%
Pipeline transportation of natural gas$2,165$1,6090.0%

The top industry that has had the strongest wage growth is the Monetary authorities - central bank industry, which has increased by 0.0% since 2009. The top industry that has has the largest wage decline is the Portfolio management industry, which has declined by 0.0% since the recession.


Company Size

Business Growth By Company Size

The biggest percentage change in the number of businesses has been in businesses with 1,000 or more employees. The number of businesses with this number of employees has grown from 57 to 77, which is an increase of 35.1%.

The smallest percentage change in the number of businesses has been in businesses with 5 to 9 employees. The number of businesses with this number of employees has grown from 18,443 to 18,473, which is an increase of 0.2%.

Table: Change in the number of Businesses by Size of Business, since the Recession:

Company SizeQ1 2018Q1 2010% Change
Fewer than 5 Employees70,98858,62221.1%
5-9 Employees18,47318,4430.2%
10-19 Employees13,40512,6156.3%
20-49 Employees9,3268,24913.1%
50-99 Employees2,9102,6669.2%
100-249 Employees1,7461,6108.4%
250-499 Employees50739528.4%
500-999 Employees15111234.8%
More Than 1,000 Employees775735.1%


Employment Growth by Company Size

The biggest percentage change in the number of employees has been in businesses with 1,000 or more employees. The number of employees in companies this size has grown from 111,065 to 162,394, which is an increase of 46.2%.

The smallest percentage change in the number of employees has been in businesses with 5 to 9 employees. The number of employees with this number of employees has grown from 119,761 to 120,842, which is an increase of 0.9%.

Table: Change in the number of Employees by Size of Business, since the Recession:

Company SizeQ1 2018Q1 2010% Change
Fewer than 5 Employees99,15291,3128.6%
5-9 Employees120,842119,7610.9%
10-19 Employees179,059168,5596.2%
20-49 Employees276,019241,34414.4%
50-99 Employees195,845180,0298.8%
100-249 Employees261,458239,7079.1%
250-499 Employees169,050138,67321.9%
500-999 Employees99,00375,40731.3%
More Than 1,000 Employees162,394111,06546.2%


Weekly Wage Growth by Company Size

The biggest percentage change in the average weekly wage has been in businesses with fewer than 5 employees. The average weekly wage in companies this size has grown from $665 to $900, which is an increase of 35.3%.

The smallest percentage change in the average weekly wage has been in businesses with 1,000 or more employees. The average weekly wage in companies this size has grown from $1,054 to $1,291, which is an increase of 22.5%.

Table: Change Average Weekly Wage by Size Since the Recession:

Company SizeQ1 2018Q1 2010% Change
Fewer than 5 Employees$900$66535.3%
5-9 Employees$755$58628.8%
10-19 Employees$742$59824.1%
20-49 Employees$777$62723.9%
50-99 Employees$841$65528.4%
100-249 Employees$936$72928.4%
250-499 Employees$982$79823.1%
500-999 Employees$1,080$83329.7%
More Than 1,000 Employees$1,291$1,05422.5%



Data Sources




About the Writer

This page was created and is maintained by Kurt Tietjen, Founder of Stavera, High Peak Media & HomeGearWorks.com. Kurt is an executive, data scientist and software engineer who holds an MBA in Management Information Systems. In 2010, he partnered with scientists at Northwestern University to launch The Street Wire. This was one of the first mainstream uses of what would become “Narrative Science”, an artificial intelligence platform specializing in natural language generation. You can contact Kurt on LinkedIn here.