On the surface, today’s newly released state Gross Domestic Product (GDP) numbers for 2014 amount to an unalloyed good-news story for New York State. Preliminary data from the federal Bureau of Economic Analysis show the state’s real GDP grew slightly faster than the national average in 2014, rebounding from a weak 2013.
However, a closer look at the data reveals stagnation last year in New York’s manufacturing sector, offset by a heavy reliance on finance and other industries located mainly in New York City.
Real GDP in New York increased by 2.5 percent, compared to the national average of 2.2 percent. That was good enough to rank 13th among the 50 states (see map below)—a considerable improvement over 2013, when the state’s real GDP rose by just 1 percent, barely half the national pace.
Growth at the national level was paced by an increase in manufacturing output, which contributed a healthy 0.4 percent chunk to the overall 2.2 percent GDP growth. Mining, including oil and gas production, also increased strongly.
In New York, by contrast, the mining sector didn’t grow at all and manufacturing output was essentially flat in 2014.
New York State’s economic growth was much more dependent on three sectors concentrated in New York City: finance and insurance; information, including publishing and film production; and real estate, including rental and leasing. Together, these sectors accounted for nearly two-thirds of statewide economic growth last year; nationally, they accounted for about one-fifth of growth.