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Midland/Odessa Lead Economic Growth for U.S. Metro Areas in 2012
Thursday, September 19, 2013 7:00 AM

Midland and Odessa ranked first and second in economic growth for U.S. metro areas in 2012, thanks to the booming oil and gas industry in West Texas, according to data released Tuesday by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Midland posted a 14.4 percent gain in inflation-adjusted gross domestic product. Odessa saw a 14.1 percent gain in real GDP. Those two areas also were the nation’s fastest growing metros in 2011.

The economies of all but one of Texas’ 25 metro areas grew in 2012 and most saw growth between 3.3 percent and 14.4 percent. The Killeen-Temple area was flat.

Construction was strong in Sherman-Denison. Durable goods manufacturing was robust in Austin. Financial services took off in Lubbock. Trade was strong in Abilene, McAllen and San Antonio.

Still, the oil and gas industry is king in many parts of Texas.

In addition to Midland and Odessa, other Texas metro areas saw significant oil-and-gas-related growth. For example, Corpus Christi, Laredo, Longview and San Angelo ranked among the top 10 U.S. metro areas for mining, natural resources and oil and gas growth last year. The Dallas-Fort Worth region ranked No. 36 for its oil and gas growth.

The Oklahoma City metropolitan area led the state in gross domestic product growth in 2012 but lagged the national average, the federal Bureau of Economic Analysis said Tuesday.

Oklahoma City's metro posted a 2.2 percent growth rate, according to preliminary figures. That put it at No. 152 out of the nation's 381 metro areas. Nationwide, metro area GDP grew by an average of 2.5 percent, up from 1.7 percent growth in 2011.

At more than $63.3 billion, the Oklahoma City metro area's GDP ranked 46th in the nation last year, the bureau said. It was $61.4 billion in 2011.

Oklahoma City's metro had GDP growth of 2.6 percent in 2011 and 1.1 percent in 2010. The bureau said growth in financial activities, leisure and hospitality and government sectors contributed to the area's 2.2 percent growth rate in 2012.

Tulsa's GDP grew by 0.3 percent in 2012, while the Fort Smith, Ark., area, which includes part of eastern Oklahoma, posted a growth rate of 1.6 percent. The Lawton-Fort Sill metropolitan area GDP contracted by 2 percent.

The Jonesboro metro area posted the largest percentage increase in real GDP growth among the eight metro areas in or connected to Arkansas, with Northwest Arkansas posting the best GDP growth between 2012 and 2009.

All of the eight metro areas in Arkansas posted GDP gains in 2012 compared to 2011 and compared to 2009. Following are the percentage gains among the metro areas between 2012 and 2011:

  • Jonesboro, up 3.26 percent
  • Hot Springs, up 2.53 percent
  • Memphis/West Memphis, up 2.03 percent
  • Pine Bluff, up 1.97 percent
  • Fort Smith, up 1.52 percent
  • Texarkana, up 1.45 percent
  • Little Rock/North Little Rock, up 0.63 percent
  • Northwest Arkansas, up 0.29 percent