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News in brief

July 22, 2021 at 1:44 a.m.

LR airport traffic up in first half of year

Passenger traffic at Bill and Hillary Clinton National Airport/Adams Field in Little Rock rose 43% in the first six months of 2021 compared with the same period a year ago.

A total of 698,160 passengers arrived at or departed from the state's largest airport in the six months ending June 30. In the same period last year, 488,545 passengers went through the airport, according to Clinton National data.

The numbers for June were more dramatic. The airport saw 177,353 passengers last month, a 243% jump from the same month in 2020 when just 51,769 passengers went through the airport. The June 2021 passenger total still fell well short of the 212,396 passengers Clinton National saw the same month in 2019, the last full year before the pandemic.

Northwest Arkansas National Airport at Highfill also has seen robust passenger growth so far in 2021.

A total of 458,088 passengers went through Northwest in the first six months of the year. The figure represented a 17% increase the passenger count in the same period in 2020. June traffic increased 249%, going from 32,914 in 2020 to 114,675 in 2021.

-- Noel Oman

J.B. Hunt honored for backing troops

J.B. Hunt Transport Services, Inc. earned high marks from the U.S. Department of Defense on Wednesday for supporting employees who serve in the National Guard and Reserves.

The Lowell-based trucking and logistics company was one of 15 recipients of the 2021 Secretary of Defense Employer Support Freedom Award.

"The men and women of the National Guard and Reserve make significant contributions to our communities and our national security," Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III said in a written statement. "We owe a debt of gratitude to these exemplary employers."

The nominating committee received 3,382 submissions from National Guard and Reserve employees.

The recipients exceeded the requirements of the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act, offering enhanced pay and benefits packages, flexible scheduling and generous leave policies.

The award was first presented in 1996, with 310 honorees to date.

-- Nathan Owens

Index goes to 637.19 after gaining 11.24

The Arkansas Index, a price-weighted index that tracks the largest public companies based in the state, closed Wednesday at 637.19, up 11.24.

"Risk sentiment remained positive for a second straight day with the energy and financial sectors leading the S&P 500 index higher as the focus has shifted from the coronavirus variant to strong corporate earnings reports for the second quarter," said Leon Lants, managing director at Stephens Inc.

The index was developed by Bloomberg News and the Democrat-Gazette with a base value of 100 as of Dec. 30, 1997.

Print Headline: LR airport traffic up in first half of year J.B. Hunt honored for backing troops Index goes to 637.19 after gaining 11.24

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