The Bureau of Economic Analysis reported this morning that personal income in Arkansas increased 0.5% in the third quarter of 2017, a bit below the national average of 0.7%. A drop in the volatile Farm Income component slowed growth both nationally and here in Arkansas, but accounted for a larger reduction in total growth for Arkansas (because it accounts for a larger share of income). This morning’s report also showed a downward revision to second quarter growth in Arkansas: Originally reported at 0.6%, the revised data show a growth rate of 0.4%. The downward revision was more than accounted for by a lower estimate of Wage and Salary growth, which was marked down from 1.2% to 0.5%. Over the past four quarters, Arkansas personal income is up 3.3%, compared to 2.6% nationally.
Earnings by place of work rose 0.6% in Arkansas in the third quarter. Wage and Salary growth was particularly strong at 1.0%. Proprietors’ income was down due to the farm component. Nonfarm proprietors’ income was up 0.8%. From 2016:Q3 through 2017:Q3, Arkansas earnings growth has outpaced the nation — 3.8% versus 2.6% — with all components growing faster than the national average. Growth in Personal Current Transfer Receipts has been somewhat slower in Arkansas than the U.S. average.
The table below breaks down Earnings growth by industry sector. The fastest-growing sector was Educational Services, while the largest contribution to total personal income growth came from Health Care and Social Assistance. Earnings from Construction and Wholesale Trade also increased sharply.