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County’s jobless rate inches up

The unemployment rate in Logan County rose slightly to 6.1 percent in May, according to data reported last week by the Arkansas Department of Workforce Services. The May figure was four-tenths of a percentage point higher than the 5.7 percent jobless rate recorded in April.

May is the latest month for which county statistics are available.

DWS reports that in May there were 8,725 people employed in Logan County while 575 were unemployed.

Also last week, data from the U.S. Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics showed Arkansas’ seasonally adjusted unemployment rate fell two-tenths of a percentage point, from 6.4 percent in May to 6.2 percent in June.

Arkansas’ civilian labor force declined 9,300, a result of 6,700 fewer employed and 2,600 fewer unemployed Arkansans. The United States’ jobless rate declined to 6.1 percent in June.

DWS Communications Director Becky Heflin said, “The decrease in Arkansas’ unemployment rate this month mirrors the trend seen at the national level. This month’s rate of 6.2 percent is the state’s lowest unemployment rate since November 2008, when the rate was 6.1 percent.”

Nonfarm payroll jobs in Arkansas decreased 5,600 in June to total 1,193,200.

Four major industry sectors posted job losses, more than offsetting gains in six sectors. Jobs in government fell 5,900. The declines, which occurred in state and local government, were attributed to the summer break at public schools and universities. Educational and health services experienced a loss of 2,600 jobs. Employment in manufacturing rose 1,900. The majority of the increase was in durable goods as manufacturing plants added employees.