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Arkansas Unemployment: Metro vs. Rural Areas

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The unemployment rate in Arkansas moved up slightly in August, to 7.4%, as it did in six of the state’s eight metro areas. Only Fort Smith and Texarkana posted declines between July and August.

The “unemployment statistics seem to suggest that non-metro parts of the state showed relative improvement in August,” the state’s economic forecaster, Michael Pakko, reported on his blog, arkansaseconomist.com.

As the map shows, unemployment rates declined in 62 of Arkansas’ 75 counties, were unchanged in three and increased in 10 counties across the state.

“Counties that showed increases included Garland, Jefferson, Lincoln, Madison, Pulaski, and Washington — each of which is part of a metropolitan area,” noted Pakko, the chief economist at the Arkansas Economic Development Institute at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock.

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