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NY State's 2014 economy grew double the rate of 2013

A Wall Street sign hangs near the New

A Wall Street sign hangs near the New York Stock Exchange on Aug. 8, 2011. Credit: AP / Jin Lee

New York State's economy, powered by Wall Street, accelerated last year, expanding at more than double the 2013 rate, according to experts and federal statistics released Wednesday.

The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis reported the state's gross domestic product grew 2.5 percent in 2014. That compares to 1 percent in 2013, 3.1 percent in 2012 and 1.3 percent in 2011.

GDP, the sum of all goods and services produced in the state, totaled $1.28 trillion last year.

New York outperformed the nation's 2.2 percent growth rate in 2014 and all Northeastern states.

Economists and fiscal experts said Wall Street and the metropolitan region helped fuel New York's strong growth.

"The recovery took a notch up last year . . . [and] was driven primarily by growth in and around New York City, including Long Island," said Christopher Jones, research vice president at the Manhattan-based Regional Plan Association.

"Part of the reason that New York did so well compared with other parts of the country was the finance industry, which had a good year," he said. "Finance really has an outsized influence on economic growth, because it's high-income jobs and high-income activity."

The bureau identified finance/insurance as growing the most in 2014 among the economic sectors in New York, followed by information and professional services.

The sector that shrank the most was construction, followed by manufacturing.

Jones said that construction activity is "driven by how things are faring on big infrastructure projects and new housing construction."

New York ranked 13th among the 50 states and the District of Columbia in GDP growth last year.

The top three performers were North Dakota, whose economy grew 6.3 percent, Texas at 5.2 percent, and Wyoming, 5.1 percent. All three benefited from a surge in oil and natural gas production.

The economies of Alaska and Mississippi contracted for the second year in a row.

In New York yesterday, state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli said the GDP data illustrates the need to "distribute economic growth throughout the state." He said upstate's economy continues to lag that of New York City, Long Island and the city's northern suburbs.

DiNapoli, of Great Neck Plaza, said the Island benefits from its proximity to the city and must redouble efforts to link businesses with research institutions, such as Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory and the North Shore-Long Island Jewish Health System's Feinstein Institute for Medical Research.

"Significant strides have been taken," he said, "but we cannot let up on those efforts."

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