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Arkansas GDP – 2023:Q4

According to the latest figures from the Bureau of Economic Analysis, Arkansas Real Gross Domestic Product grew at an annual rate of 2.2% in the fourth quarter of 2023, surpassing the 0.7% rate reported for the third quarter, but well short of the national average growth rate of 3.4%. On a year-over-year basis, Arkansas was up 1.1%, compared to 3.1% for the U.S. Comparing fourth-quarter growth rates across the 50 states, Arkansas ranked number 42.

Source: Bureau of Economic Analysis

As shown in the table below, Arkansas growth rate was constrained by declines in several sectors, including Agriculture, Wholesale Trade, Administrative & Support, and Accommodation & Food Services. Retail Trade and Durable-goods Manufacturing were the strongest growth sectors, both here an Arkansas and nationwide. The health care sector was another major contributor to growth.

Source: Bureau of Economic Analysis

Although real GDP growth has gone through two slowdowns in the past two years, the state’s cumulative growth over the past four years has outpaced that of the U.S. Since the pre-pandemic quarter, 2019:Q4, the Arkansas economy has expanded by 9.9%, compared to 8.2% for the U.S.

Source: Bureau of Economic Analysis

The largest setback for Arkansas since the Covid-contraction was in early 2022. As a result, the annual figures for 2023 versus 2022 show a growth rate of 2.5%, matching the U.S. pace. By this metric, Arkansas growth rate ranked #22 among the 50 states. In the annual figures, a decline in the Agriculture sector lowered growth by nearly a full percentage point.