Tuesday, September 17, 2013

METROS | Real GDP 2012 Growth 2.5%

Bureau of Economic Analysis map out today shows healthy real-GDP growth in metro areas in 2012. The average of all U.S. metros was 2.5 percent.

Urban economists, politicians and economic consultants watch regional data closely for competitive reasons.

Growth rates provide clues as to the success or failure of regional economic and tax policies.

Metro growth was especially strong (dark and light blue) in in Texas, the Midwest and Northwest, and was weak (brown and beige) in much of upstate New York and New England, Southwest and western Florida.

Growth in the NYC area, which includes Long Island and Northern New Jersey, is middle of the road, about 2 percent.

The map shows the uneven nature of economic growth in the United States. Decline and growth may be close neighbors. California was mixed. Also Florida - some parts, notably Greater Miami, grew rapidly while other metro areas in the state's northwest declined, while mid-Florida grew moderately.

GDP data are a better measure of a local economy than job numbers (unemployment, payroll job growth), but they take much longer to see the light of day. Job numbers for large metro areas are published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics within a month after they are collected. The good news this year is that the BEA is back to getting out the metro GDP data within nine months after the end of the year for which they are reporting. They had slipped to taking more than 12 months. Data delayed are data denied.

For the whole story and a high-resolution map, go to the release on the BEA website.