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A current topic of debate, unemployment has been at the forefront of concern for many Americans. Under a Trump administration, the country has been informed that slow job growth would see future change; so far, that change has been evident but minimal. Some Kentucky residents have found success in the current job market, while others still struggle to find reliable, full-time employment.

While being laid off from a job can certainly hurt one’s financial situation, many Kentucky workers simply cannot afford days missed from work, therefore opting to file bankruptcy. An article in Forbes recently speculated on the country’s updated unemployment rates, noting that the data gives both an optimistic and lackluster look at today’s job market. Promises from the oval office included improvements in unemployment rates, and Forbes shares that although some aspects of this goal have held true, others seem to have fallen to the wayside. In December, the U.S. added 148,000 jobs, which was roughly 40,000 jobs shy from the prediction of expert economists. Economists have also shown disappointment over the slow growth of average hourly earnings that climbed 9 percent December.

When it comes to assessing current job trends, the truth is in the numbers. The Bureau of Labor Statistics shares that, as of January, the unemployment rate remained at 4.1 percent — with the number of unemployed Americans averaging at 6.7 million. One perhaps lesser-known statistic is that of discouraged workers, who the BLS defines as those who no longer search for employment because they believe it does not exist: as of January, there were 451,000 of these workers. According to the BLS, the industries that saw the most growth were construction, food services, manufacturing and health care. Although growth may be minimal, economists and average working Americans alike are hopeful that this trend will continue.