Top 15 Fastest-Growing Metro GDP

Central Valley Business Times reports Bakersfield Metro ranks in the top 15 Fastest-Growing GDP.

Real Gross Domestic Product increased in 305 of the nation’s 381 metropolitan areas in 2012, led by growth in durable-goods manufacturing, trade, and financial activities, according to new statistics released Tuesday by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Real GDP in metropolitan areas increased 2.5 percent in 2012 after increasing 1.7 percent in 2011. In the West, real GDP expanded in 42 of the 52 MSAs. Growth in real GDP ranged from -4.0 percent to 7.4 percent.

Bakersfield, in the Central Valley, saw GDP jump by 5.9 percent, the nation’s 14th highest growth rate, just ahead of Austin, Texas.

 Bakersfield’s growth is being powered by its oil extraction and refining industry, the report says.

Metropolitan San Francisco saw its growth jump by 7.4 percent, 10th best in the nation. Its growth is being spurred by the industrial category called professional and technical services. Durable-goods manufacturing contributed the most to growth in real GDP for the region. The West accounts for 21.0 percent of the nation’s current-dollar GDP in durable-goods manufacturing.

While Bakersfield makes the headlines, the rest of the Central Valley’s metro areas have had mixed results:

Chico, 1.3 percent; 223rd in the nation

Fresno, 0.6; 276th

Hanford, -0.5; 331st

Madera, 1.5 percent; 195th

Merced, 2.2 percent; 150th

Modesto, 1.7 percent; 177th

Sacramento, 3.2 percent; 80th

Stockton, 1.7 percent; 184th

Visalia-Porterville, -1.9 percent; 366th

Yuba City, -0.6 percent; 337th

Durable-goods manufacturing continued to spur growth in many of the nation’s metropolitan areas in 2012. Strong contributions from this industry fueled growth in many small metropolitan areas where it constitutes a large portion of the area’s economy. This is especially true, the report says, in the Great Lakes region where durable-goods manufacturing contributed 8.5 percentage points to growth in Elkhart-Goshen, Ind., 8.3 percentage points to growth in Columbus, Ind., and 7.2 percentage points in Kokomo, Ind. Elkhart-Goshen, Ind., and Columbus, Ind., were two of the fastest growing metropolitan areas in 2012, with overall real GDP growth of 11.4 percent and 9.6 percent, respectively.

The effect of the growth in trade (wholesale and retail) was widespread — 363 of the nation’s 381 metropolitan areas experienced positive contributions to growth. The strongest contributions from this industry occurred in the Southwest region. One of the largest contributions occurred in Odessa, Texas (3.1 percentage points).

In 2012, the financial activities industry was a strong contributor to growth in many metropolitan areas. Notable contributions to growth from this industry occurred in Missoula, Mont., (3.4 percentage points); Eau Claire, Wis., (2.3 percentage points); Bloomington, Ill., (2.3 percentage points); Minneapolis-St. Paul-Bloomington, Minn.-Wis., (2.0 percentage points); and Ocean City, N.J. (2.0 percentage points).

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