When it comes to the economy, nobody is messing with Texas. The latest report from the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) shows the Texas economy grew by 4.7 percent in the second quarter of this year. That is number one among all states and well above the nationwide economic growth rate of 2 percent. "When a state that's the second largest state in the country, that has a 1.6 trillion-dollar economy, has the fastest growth rate, that is really saying something," says Dr. Ray Perryman, Texas-based economist.
Not surprisingly, the oil and gas industry leads the way for Texas growth, surging by 1.83 percent for the quarter. Perryman notes that this has become the new normal. "We hit a peak (in oil and gas) in 1973, we didn't break it again until 2016...we've already doubled it since then and it's going up even more," he says. "So it's a pretty remarkable situation right now."
While the energy sector typically drives the Texas economy, other sectors saw growth as well, led by technology and professional services. Perryman tells KTRH that Houston is an example of the diversity of the state's economy. "Houston of course has the massive port for international trade, the massive healthcare complex, and is really the center of the energy industry--at least in this hemisphere," he says.
Not all sectors saw growth, however. The wholesale trade industry declined by .27 percent. "We have been impacted negatively by the trade war (with China), which is impacting our exports and trade to some extent," says Perryman. "But thus far, we've been able to grow in other areas and continue the momentum."