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story.lead_photo.caption People wait in line to file for unemployment Friday, May 22, 2020, at the Little Rock office of the state Division of Workforce Services. (Arkansas Democrat-Gazette/Stephen Swofford)

Job gains in the professional services and retail sectors led the way as statewide unemployment dropped a full percentage point in October, falling to 6.2%.

The state Department of Workforce Services announced Friday that nonfarm payroll employment increased 11,500 in the month, helped by a 4,000 job gain in professional and business services and another 3,900 jobs added in retail as businesses gear up for Christmas shopping.

Unemployment fell from the 7.2% recorded in September and remains below the national jobless rate of 6.9%. The state’s civilian labor force declined 12,370, a result of 14,117 fewer unemployed and 1,747 more employed Arkansans.

Read Saturday's Arkansas Democrat-Gazette for full details.

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