Archive for the 'GDP' Category

County GDP Stats Would Give a Closer Look at Local Economies


Anyone interested in economic growth in, let’s say, West Virginia can check state GDP data from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. Want to zoom in on a metro area, such as Charleston, W.Va., and its surroundings? BEA has gross domestic product by metropolitan areas, too.

But what if you’re interested in the Marcellus Shale natural gas field that stretches beneath West Virginia and into several other states?  The Marcellus doesn’t follow state lines, or stick to metropolitan areas. How to measure its economic footprint?

BEA is exploring an idea that would be a big help: county-by-county GDP.

A recent study by BEA economists concluded that producing statistics on the performance of the nation’s more than 3,000 counties would provide a much fuller picture of U.S. economic activity. That’s because the experiences of many counties don’t match statewide economic patterns or what’s happening in the nearest cities.

In the case of the Marcellus Shale, county GDP statistics could enable data users to map the natural resources and mining industry in that region by combining data from selected counties in West Virginia, Pennsylvania, New York and surrounding

Other potential benefits of producing county GDP include:

  • Aiding efforts to attract jobs and investment. Officials who plan local economic development efforts currently rely on BEA’s county-level personal income statistics. Adding a measure of the value of the goods and services produced in each county would give policymakers a much more complete picture of a county’s needs and its economic strengths and weaknesses.
  • Capturing the local impact of industries. That could mean charting the growing value of housing services during a tourism boom in Teton County, Wyo., for example, or seeing the economic differences between Texas counties with lots of manufacturing and those that rely more on oil and gas.
  • Revealing long-term trends. Studying county GDP data over time could show how well an incentive program has worked to draw in new businesses, or document how the economic structure of Lincoln County, Mont., changed as the population aged.
  • Improving other BEA statistics. The new methodologies and data needed to produce reliable county statistics also would provide better detail for state and metro area GDP.

BEA economists are researching the data acquisition, methodologies and modeling techniques that could be used to add counties to the agency’s stable of national, state and metro GDP statistics.  For more about this effort, see the paper titled “A Research Agenda for Measuring GDP at the County Level” on BEA’s website or read the summary in the Survey of Current Business.

BEA wants to hear what data users think about the proposed methodologies and other issues surrounding development of GDP by county. Email your comments or questions to

Professional and Business Services Led Metro Area Growth


• Professional and business services contributed more than one percentage point to growth in 25 metropolitan areas, most notably in San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA (2.75 percentage points), the second fastest growing metropolitan area in the nation (8.9 percent).

• Trade contributed more than one percentage point to growth in 20 metropolitan areas, most notably in Hickory-Lenoir-Morganton, NC (1.44 percentage points).

• Finance, insurance, real estate, rental, and leasing contributed more than one percentage point to growth in 48 metropolitan areas. This industry also had strong contributions to growth in three metropolitan areas in Florida where total growth was greater than four percent: Sebastian-Vero Beach, FL (3.22 percentage points); Naples-Immokalee-Marco Island, FL (2.91 percentage points); and Punta Gorda, FL (2.39 percentage points).

• Natural resources and mining led to notable growth in total real GDP for Midland, TX (9.4 percent) and Visalia-Porterville, CA (7.6 percent), the fastest and fourth fastest growing metropolitan areas, respectively. Nondurable-goods manufacturing led to growth in Lake Charles, LA (8.3 percent)—the third fastest growing metropolitan area.

For more information, read the full report.

Gross Domestic Product Second Quarter of 2016 (Second Estimate)

Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased 1.1 percent in the second quarter Q2Q Part 2 Augt 26of 2016, according to the “second” estimate released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. The growth rate was 0.1 percentage point less than the “advance” estimate released in July. In the first quarter, real GDP rose 0.8 percent.

Second‐quarter GDP highlights
The increase in real GDP was more than accounted for by an increase in consumer spending. Spending on nondurable goods increased, notably on food and beverage grocery items. Spending on durable goods increased, notably on recreational goods and vehicles. And spending on services increased, notably on housing and utilities and on health care.

The increase in consumer spending was partly offset by a decline in inventory investment. In fact, GDP less inventory investment (real final sales of domestic product) increased 2.4 percent in the second quarter. Also partly offsetting contributions to real GDP growth, housing investment, state and local government spending, and business investment declined.

The downward revision to the second estimate of GDP growth mainly reflected downward revisions to state and local government spending and to inventory investment as well as an upward revision to imports, which is a subtraction in the calculation of GDP. For more information, see the technical note.

Corporate profits
Corporate profits decreased 1.2 percent at a quarterly rate in the secondQ2Q Pt 2 Corp quarter of 2016 after increasing 3.4 percent in the first quarter.

• Profits of domestic nonfinancial corporations decreased 4.7 percent after increasing 7.4 percent.

• Profits of domestic financial corporations increased 1.6 percent after increasing 1.9 percent.

• Profits from the rest of the world increased 7.3 percent after decreasing 6.8 percent.

Over the last 4 quarters, corporate profits decreased 4.9 percent.

For more information, read the full report.

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