Manufacturing, Ag Put Indiana On Top For GDP Growth At End Of 2015
Indiana led all the other states in GDP growth for the fourth quarter of 2015.
The state’s gross domestic product rose 3 percent – with manufacturing and agriculture driving most of that increase.
The GDP measures how much was spent on goods and services produced in-state. Indiana’s late-2015 increase from $338.7 million to $341.2 million in GDP was top in the nation, with neighboring Ohio coming in second.
Indiana's Q4 figure is also about $10 million more than its GDP at the same time in 2014. All in all, the Indiana Business Research Center’s Carol Rogers says it’s good news.
"I don't want to pop out champagne corks, but I certainly think it's worth clinking some glasses of good Indiana wine," she says.
The nation's GDP grew 1.7 percent at the end of 2015, with the information, technology and construction industries driving most of that.
But Indiana's top sectors were its mainstays -- agriculture, and non-durable goods manufacturing, which includes processed foods and pharmaceuticals as well as metals and cars. Agriculture accounted for about a quarter of Indiana's increase, and manufacturing covered a third.
"Having that as a legacy is not a bad thing," Rogers says. "You just want to make sure you have other industries that can help us weather the natural cycles of manufacturing.
Rogers says Indiana is working to diversify, but its GDP will probably rely on manufacturing for a long time. She notes the industry can maintain profits using new technologies, even if it sheds jobs.