The Department of Workforce Services released new figures today that show Arkansas' seasonally adjusted unemployment rate increased one-tenth of a percentage point from 7.7-percent in April to 7.8-percent in May.
Arkansas' civilian labor force declined 3,600, a result of 1,200 more unemployed and 4,800 fewer employed Arkansans. At 9.1-percent, the United States' jobless rate rose one-tenth of a percentage point.
DWS Communications Director Kimberly Friedman said, "Arkansas' unemployment rate rose one-tenth of a percentage point in May, as the civilian labor force declined slightly. This rate increase mirrors the trend seen at the national level."
Since May 2010, Arkansas' nonfarm payroll jobs increased 4,500. Seven major industry sectors enjoyed growth, with three adding 3,200 or more jobs, each. The largest increase occurred in leisure and hospitality (+4,700), as accommodation and food services posted a gain of 4,200 jobs. Trade, transportation, and utilities added 3,400 jobs. A majority of the growth occurred in transportation, warehousing, and utilities (+2,600). Employment in professional and business services rose 3,200. Administrative and support services posted most of the increase (+2,900). The largest annual decline occurred in government (-7,000). This loss was mostly attributed to the end of temporary federal jobs.