NCDS Blog

Useful Stats: GDP by County and Industry Contribution

Wednesday, March 25, 2020

This edition of Useful Stats examines the Bureau of Economic Analysis’ first full release of county-level gross domestic product (GDP) data. Specifically, this analysis considers total county GDP in 2018 and the contributions to each county’s GDP by industry.

While finance and insurance in New York ($222.5 billion) accounted for the single largest contribution to both total county GDP and total U.S. GDP in 2018 — followed by real estate and rental and leasing in Los Angeles ($150.2 billion) — the manufacturing sector was the highest contributor to county GDP in the greatest number of counties. Manufacturing was the primary source for county GDP in 927 out of more than 3100 counties — accounting for nearly $2.3 trillion of total U.S. GDP in 2018. Government and government enterprises (768 counties) accounted for the second most frequent leader in county GDP contributions — totaling $2.4 trillion nationally — followed by real estate and rental and leasing (647 counties) — totaling $2.7 trillion nationally. The next closest industry was agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting which was the top contributor to GDP in only 209 counties — and only accounting for a national total of $138.4 billion.

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