Texas leads the nation in many things ranging from beef production to Dr. Pepper enthusiasts, the number of farms to the number of Willie Nelson songs written about it. Well, this week, Texas continued notching another accomplishment in its nation-leading belt.
The Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) released its second-quarter GDP growth rate findings. Texas topped the list of all 50 states at 4.7 percent growth. However, that increase from the first quarter of this year to the second is 0.6 percent less than from the fourth quarter of 2018 to the first quarter of 2019.
The biggest contributor to the increase was the oil and gas industry which grew 1.83 percent — significantly outpacing other industries. Texas’ oil and gas industry has slowed down a bit after years of record growth in both crude oil and natural gas.
The second-biggest growth in Texas belonged to the professional, scientific, and technical services industry.
Additionally, government growth was reported at 0.31 percent. Compared to other states, this is roughly middle-of-the-pack.
Meanwhile, the biggest loss Texas suffered was in the wholesale trade industry — which encompasses products in “manufacturing, agriculture, mining, publishing, and some other information industries.”
It shrunk 0.27 percent.
This can mostly be chalked up to a raging trade war between the Trump administration and China.
To offset the losses, the United States Department of Agriculture has already dispersed over $630 million in bailout dollars to Texas farmers hurt by the trade war, with more taxpayer-funded handouts expected.
Nationwide, the United States’ economic growth rate was a mere two percent — a number which Texas more than doubled on its own.
California significantly lagged behind Texas in the second quarter of 2019, with its economic growth coming in at a muted 1.9 percent.
Overall, the Southwest region (Arizona, New Mexico, Oklahoma, and Texas) posted the highest overall growth rate for a region at 4.3 percent.
Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar sent the following statement on the news to The Texan:
“The Q2 GDP growth number for Texas is indicative of the continued strength and diversity of the Texas economy. While some of this growth is attributable to a corresponding uptick in mining sector activity during the second quarter, continued diversification of the Texas economy has made our state less reliant on a single sector to drive economic growth. That is part of the reason for Texas’ greater growth even among energy producing states.
Mining is still a critical part of our economy, so my office continues to monitor developments in the energy markets given ongoing global uncertainty. We are also carefully tracking developments in international trade and trade negotiations. As the nation’s top exporting state, Texas’ economic growth could see a significant negative impact if trade tensions escalate further and uncertainty is not resolved. Congress could take a big step in providing some certainty in our trade relationship with Mexico, Texas’ biggest international trading partner, by passing the USMCA.”
Editor’s Note: This sotry was updated from its original form to include the statement from Comptroller Hegar.
Brad Johnson is an Ohio native who graduated from the University of Cincinnati in 2017. He is an avid sports fan who most enjoys watching his favorite teams continue their title drought throughout his cognizant lifetime. In his free time, you may find Brad watching and quoting Monty Python productions.