Economic Growth Fastest in Oregon, New Hampshire

Article excerpt

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Oregon and New Hampshire enjoyed the fastest economic growth among the states in 1997, and California's economy remained the biggest, the government said Monday.

A Commerce Department report broke down the nation's gross domestic product, the total output of goods and services, to show the amount contributed by each state. The total U.S. economy grew in 1997 by 4.3 percent, when measured in current dollars. The growth was 3.6 percent when adjusted for inflation.

The biggest state gains in economic output were enjoyed by residents of Oregon, where the economy expanded by 7.6 percent, and New Hampshire, close behind with an increase in its gross state product of 7.5 percent in current dollars. At the other end of the scale, Hawaii actually saw its economic output shrink in 1997, declining 0.2 percent, as the state's economy was hit hard by fallout from the Asian currency crisis. Downturns in construction and financial services were major contributors to Hawaii's overall decline. Oklahoma's economic output jumped 3.9 percent to $76.6 trillion. The new government figures showed the state with the biggest economy remained California, where total output measured $1.03 trillion in 1997, or 12.7 percent of the national total of $8.1 trillion in the output of goods and services measured in current dollars. Four other states with large shares of the national gross domestic product were New York, 8 percent of the national total; Texas, 7.4 percent; Illinois, 4.9 percent, and Florida, which accounts for 4.7 percent of total GDP. Taken together, the five largest state economies account for 40 percent of the nation's economy. The five with the smallest economies, each measuring 0.2 percent of the total, were Montana, North Dakota, South Dakota, Vermont and Wyoming. …