Arkansas Unemployment Rate Rises to 7.2 Percent in January

The state Department of Workforce Services said Monday that Arkansas’ seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased one-tenth of a percentage point from 7.1 percent in December to 7.2 percent in January.

(More: Click here (PDF) to see the complete report.)

The report said Arkansas’ civilian labor force decreased by 3,300, a result of 4,100 fewer employed and 800 more unemployed Arkansans.

During that same period, the U.S. jobless rate also increased one-tenth of a percentage point, reaching 7.9 percent in January.

"Arkansas’ unemployment rate rose slightly in January, related in large part to the decline in employment," DWS Communications Director Kimberly Friedman said in a news release. "The rate increase was not unexpected and mirrors the trend seen at the national level."

Since January 2012, employment in Arkansas changed like this:

  • Nonfarm payroll jobs in Arkansas rose by 5,300.
  • Five major industry sectors posted job growth, offsetting declines in six sectors.
  • Trade, transportation, and utilities added 8,300 jobs.
  • Jobs in educational and health services increased by 2,400.
  • Employment in leisure and hospitality rose by 1,300.
  • Construction posted the greatest loss, down by 2,700 jobs, with declines reported in highway, street and bridge construction, related to project completions.