Total personal income in Arkansas jumped at an annual rate of 7.5% in the fourth quarter of 2018, outpacing the U.S. growth rate of 5.2%, according to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. That pace made Arkansas the fifth fastest-growing state in the nation.
“The sharp increase was largely attributable to a spike in farm income, which increased at an annual rate of 385%,” notes Michael Pakko, state economic forecaster at the Arkansas Economic Development Institute at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. “The increase in farm income was not unique to Arkansas: The only states to outpace Arkansas’ growth rate in the fourth quarter were the agricultural states of South Dakota, Iowa, Nebraska and North Dakota,” Pakko wrote late last month on his Arkansas Economist blog. “Even without the volatile farm income component, however, Arkansas personal income increased at a rate of 4.7% — essentially the same rate as the U.S. total.”
Pakko added that the “fourth-quarter surge in personal income translated to an uptick in per capita income, which reached $43,312. This figure represents 79.5% of average per capita personal income for the U.S.”