Arkansas’s unemployment rate drops to 6.2 percent in October

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark.- Unemployment in Arkansas has decreased to 6.2%.

According to labor force data, produced by the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and released Friday by the Arkansas Division of Workforce Services.

The figures show Arkansas’s seasonally adjusted unemployment rate decreased by one percent, from 7.2% in September (revised down from 7.3%) to 6.2% in October. Arkansas’s civilian labor force declined 12,370, which is a result of 14,117 fewer unemployed and 1,747 more employed Arkansans.

The country’s jobless rate also declined to 6.9% between September and October.

BLS Program Operations Manager Susan Price said, “Arkansas’ unemployment rate declined sharply in October to 6.2 percent. This was spurred by the decline in the number of unemployed Arkansans.

Arkansas Nonfarm Payroll Job Summary:

Arkansas’s nonfarm payroll jobs increased 11,500 in October to total 1,243,900. According to the news release, eight major industry sectors posted gains. Professional and business services added 4,00 jobs. According to ADWS, most of the expansion was in administrative and support services. According to the report, jobs in trade, transportation and utilities rose 3,800. A majority of the hiring occurred in retail trade. Employment in manufacturing increased by 1,000. Officials say gains in durable goods (+1,400) more than offset the losses in nondurable goods (-400) manufacturing. According to the report, construction added 1,000 jobs.

Officials say compared to October 2019, nonfarm payroll jobs in the state are down 42,600. According to the report, losses were reported in eight major industry sectors. Jobs in manufacturing dropped 16,200. Officials say in the report reductions were seen in both durable goods (-10,400) and nondurable goods (-5,800) manufacturing. Employment in leisure and hospitality declined 15,400. Losses occured in all subsectors, with food services posting most of the decrease (-11,700). Government jobs are down 8,600, all in local (-8,100) and state (-1,900) government. Educational and health services declined 7,700, according to the report. All losses were in health care and social assistance (-7,700). Officials say other notable contractions occured in other services (-3,900) and financial activities (-1,900). Trade, transportation and utilities posted the largest increase, adding 9,500 jobs. Officials say most of the growth was in retail trade (+5,600) and transportation-warehousing-utilities (+3,700). Gains were also reported in professional and business services (+1,800) and construction (+1,200), according to the report.

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