Attributes success to state’s workforce, natural resources and state’s efforts to recruit industry
HOT SPRINGS – Gov. Asa Hutchinson announced Wednesday at an event in Hot Springs that the number of people employed in Arkansas is at an all-time high, a statistic the governor attributes to private sector confidence in the economy, in addition to the state’s successful efforts to recruit industry and a growing appreciation nationally of the state’s strong workforce and natural resources.
“Our aggressive recruiting nationally and around the world is paying off as more and more industries expand or relocate to Arkansas,” Gov. Hutchinson said. “From our computer science initiative to the state’s strong workforce, companies are taking notice. While there’s always more work to be done, these statistics are a good indication that Arkansas’s economy continues to trend in the right direction, and — more importantly — that Arkansans are finding work.”
In August, a record 1,329,979 people were employed in Arkansas, beating the previous record of 1,327,941 in July of this year, according to the Arkansas Department of Workforce Services.
The unemployment rate in Arkansas reached a record low of 3.4 percent in 2017, down from 5.6 percent in January 2015, when Gov. Hutchinson took office. Currently unemployment sits at 3.5 percent, nearly a full percentage point below the national average, and Arkansas has been below the national unemployment rate for 28 consecutive months and at or below 4 percent for 14 months.