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Economy  

Arkansas' economy during the 19th century was based on agriculture, extraction and severance.  During the early decades of the 20th century, progressive governors, legislators and businessmen worked to diversify the Arkansas economy, making it less vulnerable to commodity price fluctuations and crop failures.  Today's economic profile reflects progress toward that goal.

What we do: occupations, by sectors

1990 2000
Total civilian labor force (thousands) 1,126.1 1,238.1
total employed  1,047.8 1,183.2
unemployment rate   7% 4.4%
Non-farm payroll jobs, total (thousands) 923.5  1,161.6
Mining    4.3 3.4
construction  37.6 53.5
Manufacturing  232.8 251.4
Transportation & Utilities 56.0 70.3
Trade   205.6  267.0
Finance and Insurance  38.3  46.2
Service sector 189.6 278.6
Government 159.3 191.3

1999 figures reveal average annual employment in the agricultural, forestry and fisheries sector of 16,163.

Selected 1999 average weekly wages, with national figures
provided for comparison purposes
Industry    Average week's wage,
Arkansas, dollars
National
all   488 641
all private   482  639
agriculture  396  373
mining 671  1,051
construction 508  669
manufactures 544 806
trade, retail  327 338
finance 624 978
services  448 606
federal gov 772  851
state gov  560  667

Manufacturing

Number of Establishments: 3294 (1999)

Five largest categories by numbers of establishments (1999)
Fabricated metal products 497
Wood Products 404
Food Manufacturing 295
Printing and related 269
Machinery manufacturing  255

Number of workers                               229,628 (1999)

Five largest categories by numbers employed (1999)
Food manufacturing 51,136
Fabricated metal products 22,732
Machinery manufacturing 17,579
Wood products 15,779
Elect. equip, appliances 15,614

Total value, shipments                            $45,185,963 (1997)



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