Nebraska Ranked Worst in Nation for 2019 GDP Growth

Nebraska Ranked Worst in Nation for 2019 GDP Growth

The Bureau of Economic Analysis published its quarterly state GDP report for 4th quarter and Annual 2019.

While these numbers are pre-COVID-19, it provides a good baseline for states to see where they were before the crisis began and where significant reform is needed to help struggling industries.

In the 4th quarter for 2019, Nebraska grew 2.6 percent, which was one of the higher growth statistics for the Midwest Plains region.  The industries that saw the most growth in Q4-2019 were:

  • Agriculture, forestry, fishing, and hunting (0.87)
  • Finance and Insurance (0.65)
  • Utilities (0.45)
  • Government and Government Enterprises (0.39)
  • Retail Trade (0.39)

The biggest losses were experienced in:

  • Transportation and warehousing (-0.41)
  • Durable goods manufacturing (-0.16)
  • Wholesale Trade (-0.12)
  • Other services (excluding government) (-0.06)
  • Mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction (-0.01)
  • Nondurable goods manufacturing (-0.01)

The problem with government having such a large growth figure is that this is clearly crowding out private sector spending and, in some cases, could be negatively impacting our state’s overall GDP.  There is no reason why government economic activity should be larger than manufacturing.

When looked at in annual terms, the state only saw a 0.6% GDP growth for 2018-2019, the lowest in the country.  Looking at the industries from the annual aggregate, the largest gain was in health care and social assistance where the biggest loss was in transportation and warehousing.

Bea map

The next release of data will be for the 1st Quarter of 2020 on July 7th.

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