Report: R.I. GDP growth slows in Q2

RHODE ISLAND GDP was projected to have increased at an annualized rate of 1.7% in the second quarter of 2019. / COURTESY RHODE ISLAND PUBLIC EXPENDITURE COUNCIL AND THE CENTER FOR GLOBAL AND REGIONAL ECONOMIC STUDIES AT BRYANT UNIVERSITY
RHODE ISLAND GDP was projected to have increased at an annualized rate of 1.7% in the second quarter of 2019. / COURTESY RHODE ISLAND PUBLIC EXPENDITURE COUNCIL AND THE CENTER FOR GLOBAL AND REGIONAL ECONOMIC STUDIES AT BRYANT UNIVERSITY

PROVIDENCE – The gross domestic product in Rhode Island was estimated to have expanded at a 1.7% annualized rate in the second quarter of 2019, according to the Rhode Island Public Expenditure Council and the Center for Global and Regional Economic Studies at Bryant University on Friday.

The report focuses on the Rhode Island Current Economic Indicator, consisting of 11 metrics calibrated to reflect GDP growth in the state.

The report called the GDP growth sluggish for the quarter and projected slow growth going forward – predicting a 1.5% rate of increase in the third quarter of 2019.

GDP reflected a 2.2% annualized growth in the first quarter of 2019, a 1% yearly rate of expansion in the fourth quarter of 2018 and an annualized 5.7% contraction in the third quarter of 2018.

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The report found that seven of 11 factors of the CEI improved in the quarter. Despite this, the state was said to have been held back by a productivity problem, which has impacted manufacturing; professional, scientific and technical services; information services; and transportation services.

The report said Rhode Island needs a long-term plan to foster productivity in the state. The report also tied a lack of real wage growth to the state’s productivity.

Concern was also expressed over the performance of the professional and business service performance, manufacturing employment trends and a “volatile” labor market in the state.

CEI factors in the second quarter:

  • Regional economic conditions (GDP): 1.8% annualized rate of growth
  • National economic conditions (U.S. GDP): 2.1% annualized rate of growth
  • Construction employment: 6.3% annualized rate of growth
  • Manufacturing employment: 6.2% annualized rate of contraction
  • Trade, transportation and utilities employment: 3.8% annualized rate of growth
  • Information services employment: 12% annualized rate of growth
  • Professional and business services employment: 1.2% annualized rate of contraction
  • Financial services employment: 5.7% annualized rate of growth
  • Leisure and hospitality employment: 10.3% annualized rate of growth
  • Education and health services employment: 7.7% annualized rate of growth
  • Wage and salary disbursements: 1% annualized rate of contraction
  • Average weekly initial unemployment claims: 27.3% increase from the previous quarter
  • General sales and gross receipt taxes: 5.9% increase from the previous quarter

Chris Bergenheim is the PBN web editor. You may reach him at Bergenheim@PBN.com.

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