Rocky Mountain and the Far West Led GDP Growth in the Third Quarter of 2018

Real gross domestic product (GDP) increased in 49 states and the District of Columbia, in the third quarter 2018 compared to the second quarter of 2018. U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis reported the real GDP growth rates, measured on a seasonally adjusted annual rate basis, ranged from 5.8% in Washington to 0.0% in West Virginia.

Nationwide, real GDP growth slowed to 3.4% in the third quarter, from 4.2% in the second quarter. Real estate and rental and leasing; professional, scientific, and technical services; and utilities were the leading contributors to the deceleration in real GDP growth in the third quarter.

Regionally, Rocky Mountain and the Far West regions recorded the highest growth rates for the third quarter of 2018. The Great Lakes region reported the lowest growth during this time at 2.7%. Compared to the third quarter of 2017, the Plain region made the most progress by recording 4.4% growth in real GDP. The Mideast and Rocky Mountain recorded slight declines during the 12 month period.

According to the industry statistics, 19 of 22 industry groups contributed to the overall 3.4% increase in real GDP in the third quarter. Wholesale trade; information; and finance and insurance were the leading contributors to the acceleration in real GDP growth in the third quarter. Real value added (a measure of an industry’s contribution to GDP) for the wholesale trade industry group increased 7.4%, after increasing 2.6% in the second quarter.  Information services industry group, real value added increased 7.6% in the third quarter, after increasing 13.4% in the second quarter. For the Finance and insurance industry group, real value added increased 5.5% in the third quarter, after decreasing 2.0% in the second quarter.

Washington, recorded the highest real GDP growth rate of 5.8% for the third quarter of 2018. The largest contributions came from Information services and retail trade industry groups. Mining, quarrying, and oil and gas extraction and Arts, entertainment, and recreation were the drags to the state economy. Finance and insurance was the leading contributor to growth in Utah (4.4%), the second fastest growing state and information services was the lead real GDP growth in Arizona (4.3%), the third fastest growing state. Real GDP for mining subtracted from growth in Wyoming, Alaska, and West Virginia which were the three slowest growing states.

 



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