Arkansas Jobless Rate Falls to 7.4 Percent

The unemployment rate in Arkansas dropped one-tenth of a percentage point to 7.4 percent in December, according to the Arkansas Department of Workforce Services.

The national jobless rate fell from 7 percent to 6.7 percent in December, and the Arkansas decrease marked the second decrease in the rate.

DWS spokesperson Becky Heflin said the decrease was the result of a gain in employment and a corresponding increase in the size of the civilian labor force. 

See the full report for December here (PDF).

Five industry sectors reported job losses in Arkansas in December, while three posted gains. Leisure and hospitality saw the largest decrease at 2,600 jobs, a seasonal trend according to DWS; government dropped 1,300 jobs; and professional and business services saw a decrease of 1,300.

Thanks to holiday hiring in retail, the trade, transportation and utilities sector added 1,600 jobs.