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Center for Business & Economic Research

Matt Kendall, mortgage division CEO of Arvest Bank of Fayetteville.
Banking & Finance / Real Estate

Rising Interest Rates and Property Costs Slow Lending MomentumLock Icon

Homebuyers hit the brakes as high-priced properties meet the highest mortgage rates in 14 years. read more >
Mervin Jebaraj, director of the Center for Business and Economic Research at the University of Arkansas
Banking & Finance / Business Services / Health Care / Manufacturing / Restaurants & Food / Retail / Small Business / Tourism / Transportation

UA Economist Gives Tepid Forecast for Arkansas

Mervin Jebaraj believes several important industries will have a difficult time reaching pre-pandemic employment levels. read more >
Business Services / Construction / Investments / Public Companies / Real Estate / Retail / Transportation

Walmart and ‘Vendorville’ Just Part of Building BoomLock Icon

While Walmart Inc.’s new headquarters in Bentonville propelled the value of commercial building permits to record highs during the first half of this year, the rest of northwest Arkansas generated its own sizable increases over the previous year. read more >
Arvest Bank headquarters in downtown Fayetteville 
Banking & Finance / Real Estate

Commercial Real Estate Absorption in Northwest Arkansas Highest Since 2012, Report Says

One factor was a significant uptick in warehouse leasing. read more >
Homebuilder Bill Burckart believes a regional policy approach can help alleviate the growing crunch on affordable housing in northwest Arkansas.
Business Services / Construction / Education / Government & Politics / Insurance / Media & Marketing / Nonprofits / Real Estate / Transportation

Housing Trends in Northwest Arkansas Pits Popularity vs. AffordabilityLock Icon

Northwest Arkansas leaders are concerned that the region's rising economic tide could leave many in the area vainly searching for an affordable home. read more >
Travis Hester, owner of several Eat My Catfish restaurants in Arkansas, says an increased federal minimum wage would add hardship at a time when “it’s never been this tough to drive profit to the bottom line.”
Government & Politics / Nonprofits / Public Companies / Restaurants & Food / Retail / Tourism

$15 U.S. Wage Plan: How Would Arkansas Fare?Lock Icon

Some in the hospitality industry question the timing of raising the federal minimum to $15, fearing added burdens could halt recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. read more >
Business Services / Education / Government & Politics / Media & Marketing / Nonprofits

Northwest Arkansas Council Focuses on Diversity Follow-Through

In 2013, the Northwest Arkansas Council started EngageNWA, its project whose goal was to provide a platform and the tools needed to help the region become more diverse and inclusive. read more >
Government & Politics / Restaurants & Food / Retail / Tourism

Liquor Store Sales Grow as Bar Drinks FallLock Icon

Tax collections show liquor store sales grew, even during the coronavirus pandemic, while mixed-drink sales plummeted. read more >
Park Plaza has a dozen storefront vacancies and recently lost Zoes Kitchen, a pandemic casualty. Still, the mall was far from empty on a recent Sunday, with consumers basking in sun through the mall’s signature skylights.
Business Services / Government & Politics / Investments / Real Estate / Restaurants & Food / Retail

Can Malls Shake Off the Cobwebs?Lock Icon

A Jonesboro real estate broker is among those who sees a potential for malls transforming after the pandemic, with a silver lining possibly being local stores taking over chain space. read more >
Business Services / Education / Health Care / Insurance / Investments / Public Companies / Real Estate / Retail / Small Business

Pandemic Collateral Damage? Small FirmsLock Icon

The COVID-19 pandemic has delivered a wallop to the country’s economy, but experts interviewed by Arkansas Business don’t expect too much lasting damage. There is a caveat, of course. read more >
Mervin Jebaraj, director of the Center for Business and Economic Research at the University of Arkansas
Banking & Finance / Education / Government & Politics / Health Care / Small Business

Jebaraj Gives Passing Grade to CARES ActLock Icon

Mervin Jebaraj works at the University of Arkansas’ Walton College of Business so it is apropos that he has a grade for the federal response to the COVID-19 pandemic. read more >

Report: UA’s Economic Impact Grew to $2.2B in 2018

The University of Arkansas’ economic impact grew to $2.2 billion in 2018, which is more than three times the $725 million impact it had in 2009. read more >
Mervin Jebaraj of the University of Arkansas’ Center for Business & Economic Research says that growth in the in Fayetteville MSA is hot, “and will probably remain that way.”
Agriculture & Poultry / Education / Investments / Nonprofits / Public Companies / Real Estate / Retail / Tourism / Transportation

Northwest Arkansas’ Task? Working on Good ProblemsLock Icon

As the growth spree in northwest Arkansas rolls on, worries like scarce housing and infrastructure arise. read more >
Kelly Hale Syer, executive director of Downtown Springdale, is optimistic about revitalization, along with Springdale Mayor Doug Sprouse, center, and Bill Rogers, an official with the Springdale Chamber of Commerce. They are seen here on Emma Street, the backbone of the city’s Downtown Master Plan.
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Springdale Hopes to Maintain New Momentum DowntownLock Icon

Springdale hopes to build on recent efforts to reinvigorate its downtown. read more >
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Plains & Eastern Clean Line Appears Doomed In ArkansasLock Icon

After putting nearly nine years and more than $100 million of investors’ money into a $2.5 billion power transmission project across Oklahoma and Arkansas, the electric dream of Michael Skelly has shorted out. read more >
A rendering of the future Arkansas Children's Northwest hospital in Springdale
Banking & Finance / Business Services / Construction / Education / Health Care / Real Estate / Restaurants & Food / Small Business / Transportation

Hospital Boom Creates Development Ripples Across Northwest ArkansasLock Icon

Development experts say that hospitals are a great magnet for other retail and residential projects, such as restaurants, service companies and apartments. read more >
Banking & Finance / Business Services / Retail

Survey: Arkansas Consumers Planning Large Purchases

Arkansas consumers made large household purchases in the past six months and expect to make more, according to the third installment of the fall 2016 Arvest Consumer Sentiment Survey. read more >
Wal-Mart began paying its workers at least $9 an hour last year.
Agriculture & Poultry / Banking & Finance / Business Services / Construction / Education / Energy / Government & Politics / Health Care / Insurance / Investments / Legal / Manufacturing / Media & Marketing / Nonprofits / Public Companies / Real Estate / Restaurants & Food / Retail / Small Business / Tourism / Transportation

No Surprise: Higher Pay Helps Attract, Retain Employees

All industries, from health care to manufacturing, have faced a shortage of workers. Kathy Deck, director of the Center for Business & Economic Research at the Sam M. Walton School of Business at the University of Arkansas, says increasing pay would be the first action she would suggest when companies can’t find the right workers to fill positions. read more >
Mike Harvey, chief operating officer of the Northwest Arkansas Council, says one drawback for businesses is finding available buildings.
Business Services / Construction / Education / Manufacturing / Real Estate

Newcomers to Northwest Arkansas Refilling Labor Pool

The Arkansas Department of Workforce Services released a report in July that showed Arkansas’ seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 3.8 percent in June 2016. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported unadjusted unemployment rates of 3.1 percent for northwest Arkansas and 4.2 percent for Arkansas. read more >
Banking & Finance / Real Estate / Retail / Small Business

Arvest Report: Consumer Sentiment Declines in Arkansas

Arkansans' opinions about the economy have fallen since March, bringing a key consumer sentiment measure more in line with national attitudes, according to a new report sponsored by Arvest Bank. read more >