Local economies post solid GDP growth Larimer, Weld finish in top 20 nationwide

Two local metropolitan statistical areas placed in the top 20 in terms of growth in gross domestic product nationwide, but growth in GDP in the Greeley MSA — comprising Weld County — cooled from the sizzling pace of recent years.

That’s according to the latest data published by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Greeley’s economy grew by 5.3 percent in 2015, dropping the MSA to No. 19 in the country in terms of GDP growth. The Greeley MSA’s GDP growth ranked No. 4 nationwide in 2014 and No. 2 in 2013.

The Greeley MSA recorded real GDP of $9.53 billion in 2015, up from $9.01 billion in 2014 and $8.2 billion in 2013. Estimates of GDP by metropolitan statistical areas are measured in chained (2009) dollars, an inflation-adjusted measure.

Among key industries, only construction declined in the Greeley MSA — down only slightly. Although the energy sector has struggled with low oil and gas prices, the natural resources and mining sector, which includes energy extraction, still contributed positively to the Weld County economy, accounting for 1.25 percent of the GDP growth.

The Fort Collins-Loveland MSA — comprising Larimer County — grew by 5.5 percent in 2015, placing it at No. 15 nationwide in terms of growth. The MSA recorded real GDP of $14.01 billion, up from $13.32 billion in 2014 and $12.75 billion in 2013.

The greatest contributors to the Larimer County economy were durable-goods manufacturing, accounting for 1.01 percent of GDP growth, and insurance, real estate, rental and leasing, accounting for 1.37 percent. Only transportation and utilities declined.

The Boulder MSA — encompassing Boulder County — grew by 3.6 percent, ranked No. 68 nationwide. The Boulder economy recorded real GDP of $21.54 billion, up from $20.8 billion in 2014 and $20.25 in 2013.

Durable-goods manufacturing accounted for 1.01 percent of Boulder County’s growth rate, the highest-contributing sector.

The Denver-Aurora-Lakewood MSA, which includes Broomfield County, grew by 4 percent in 2015, ranking No. 51 nationwide.

Econowatch, October 2016 - Specific Industries