Oklahoma listed as one of fastest growing economies in nation

Thursday, June 12, 2014

by Catherine Sweeney

The Oklahoman

Oklahoma’s energy industry helped create one of the top five fastest growing statewide economies in the nation, according to federal figures released Wednesday.

With an increase of 4.17 percent, Oklahoma ranks fourth in GDP growth from 2012 to 2013, according to a report from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. The state trails only North Dakota, West Virginia and Wyoming. The country saw a growth of 1.9 percent.

“What these three states ... and Oklahoma have in common is that they rely heavily on the mining industry,” said Mickey Hepner, University of Central Oklahoma’s College of Business dean.

Mining, which includes oil and natural gas exploration and production, was Oklahoma’s fastest growing industry in 2013, with an increase of 19.22 percent since 2012, according to Wednesday’s release.

“Overall, it was a pretty good year for the energy industry, which is elevating the state,” Hepner said.

Energy also provided indirect economic benefits to other industries, such as construction.

“It also has spillover effects. (Energy’s role) is probably more significant than the BEA is reporting,” he said.

The second highest growth rate went to the agriculture industry. It grew 17.7 percent from 2012 to 2013.


Read the rest of this story at NewsOK.com.