Arkansas jobless rate stays at 3.6%, state payrolls grow by 2,200

Arkansas jobless rate stays at 3.6%, state payrolls grow by 2,200. (Photo courtesy of Talk Business & Politics0

(TALK BUSINESS & POLITICS) Arkansas’ jobless rate remained at 3.6% for the second straight month as the employers in most industries continued to post “help wanted” signs at the end of 2018 and into the New Year.

According to monthly labor force data compiled by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) and released Friday (Jan. 18) by the state Department of Workforce Services, Arkansas’ jobless rate held steady between November and December as 2,202 workers were added to the labor pool, a result of 1,276 more employed and 926 unemployed now getting paychecks.

“Arkansas’ unemployment rate remained fairly stable throughout 2018, ending the year down one-tenth of a percentage point compared to January,” said Susan Price, program manager of Arkansas’ BLS group. “While the U.S. jobless rate also trended down over the year, Arkansas is still three-tenths of a percentage point below the national rate.”

Arkansas’ solid unemployment data follows the earlier U.S. jobless report that lifted the U.S. stock market after the U.S. Labor Department reported that total nonfarm payroll employment increased by 312,000 in December. Still, the nation’s unemployment rate rose 0.2% to 3.9% as strong job gains were noted in healthcare, food services and drinking places, construction, manufacturing and retail trade.

Similarly, the widely-held ADP National Employment Report that highlights the nation’s private sector showed U.S. employers filled some 271,000 positions in the last month of 2018. That report, which is derived from ADP’s actual payroll data, measures the change in total nonfarm private employment each month on a seasonally-adjusted basis.

Read more at Talk Business & Politics.

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