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How BEA Regional Data is Used to Distribute Federal Funds to State, Local Governments

Did you know that each year BEA regional economic statistics, such as annual personal income and per capita personal income are used to allocate billions of dollars in federal funds to states and local governments?  In fiscal year 2013, about $308 billion in federal funds were distributed under programs using BEA statistics in funding formulas.

Each year BEA gathers information on the amounts distributed by federal programs using BEA regional economic statistics.  BEA recently released materials detailing the amounts distributed in fiscal year 2013.  The information can be found on BEA’s Web site at http://www.bea.gov/regional/about.cfm under “Uses of the Regional Program Estimates”.

The use of BEA regional economic statistics in federal funding formulas is only one of the important uses of these data, and is just one reason why the accuracy and timeliness of these statistics are so important.

regional income and product account

Value of U.S. Assets Decreased but Value of U.S. Liabilities Increased in First Quarter 2014

The U.S. net international investment position was -$5,539.3 billion (preliminary) at the end of the first quarter of 2014 as the value of U.S. liabilities exceeded the value of U.S. assets. At the end of the fourth quarter, the net position was -$5,383.0 billion (revised).

Assets and Liabilities

  •  The $156.3 billion decrease in the net position reflected a $108.3 billion decrease in the value of U.S. assets and a $48.0 billion increase in the value of U.S. liabilities.
  •  The U.S. net international investment position decreased 2.9 percent in the first quarter, compared with a decrease of 7.8 percent in the fourth quarter and an average quarterly decrease of 7.4 percent from the first quarter of 2011    through the fourth quarter of 2013.
  •  U.S. assets were $23,601.5 billion at the end of the first quarter compared with $23,709.8 billion at the end of the fourth quarter.
  •  U.S. liabilities were $29,140.8 billion at the end of the first quarter compared with $29,092.8 billion at the end of the fourth quarter.

Read the full report.

 

Travel and Tourism Spending Turned Down in the First Quarter of 2014

Real spending on travel and tourism turned down in the first quarter of 2014, decreasing at an annual rate of 1.0 percent after increasing 4.5 percent (revised) in the fourth quarter of 2013.  Growth in real gross domestic product (GDP) also experienced a down turn, decreasing 2.9 percent (third estimate) in the first quarter after increasing 2.6 percent in the fourth quarter.

The leading contributors to the down turn in the first quarter were “recreation and entertainment,” and  “food services and drinking places.” “Recreation and entertainment” turned down, decreasing 11.2 percent in the first quarter after increasing 0.9 percent in the fourth quarter. “Food services and drinking places” also turned down in the first quarter, decreasing 3.5 percent after increasing 7.4 percent in the fourth quarter. Partially offsetting these downturns, “all other transportation-related commodities” turned up.

 

tourism2

real tourism spendingReal Tourism Spending.  Real spending on “recreation and entertainment” turned down, decreasing11.2 percent in the first quarter after increasing0.9 percent in the fourth quarter. Real spending on “food services and drinking places” also turned down, decreasing3.5 percent in the first quarterafterincreasing7.4 percent in the fourth quarter.

tourism pricesTourism Prices.  Overall growth in prices for travel and tourism goods and services turned up in the first quarter of 2014, increasing 2.3 percent following a 0.2 percent (revised) decrease in the fourth quarter.  The upturn was mainly attributable to an upturn in prices for “traveler accommodations,” which increased 13.2 percent in the first quarter after decreasing 8.0 percent in the fourth quarter. In contrast, prices for “passenger air transportation” turned down, decreasing 5.5 percent in the first quarter after increasing7.0 percent in the fourth quarter.

tourism employmentTourism Employment.  Employment in the travel and tourism industries decelerated, increasing2.1 percent in the first quarter of 2014 after increasing

2.7 percent (revised) in the fourth quarter of 2013. By comparison, overall U.S. employment increased

1.5 percent in the first quarter after increasing1.8 percent in the fourth quarter. “Air transportation services” and “food services and drinking places” were significant contributors to employment growth.

Total Tourism-Related Spending was $1.5 trillion in the first quarter of 2014. It consisted of $873.1 billion (58 percent) of direct tourism spending and$625.7 billion (42 percent) of indirect tourism- related spending.

Total Tourism-Related Employment was 7.7 million jobs in the first quarter of 2014 and consisted of 5.4 million (71 percent) direct tourism jobs and 2.3 million (29 percent) indirect tourism-related jobs.