Saturday, December 6, 2008

Good Economic News...For North Dakota.

I feel like I owe everyone an apology. I have evidently joined the negative nancys of the liberal media in just reporting the negative news about our economy. Well, in order to balance out the news of the collapse of our economic news, I bring you some positive economic news.

Our neighbors to the west (North Dakota) are doing just fine. Basically, up to this point, North Dakota has not seen the economics that are dragging down the rest of the country. They are looking for more workers (they have more jobs then workers) and have a 1.2 billion dollar surplus (out of 7.7 Billion budget), while Minnesota deals with a 5.2 billion dollar deficit.

From the New York Times:

The number of new cars sold statewide was 27 percent higher this year than last, state records through November showed. North Dakota’s foreclosure rate was minuscule, among the lowest in the country. Many homes have still been gaining modestly in value, and, here in Fargo, construction workers can be found on any given day hammering away on a new downtown condominium complex, complete with a $540,000 penthouse (still unsold, but with a steady stream of lookers).

While dozens of states, including neighboring ones, have desperately begun raising fees, firing workers, shuttering tourist attractions and even abolishing holiday displays to overcome gaping deficits, lawmakers this week in Bismarck, the capital, were contemplating what to do with a $1.2 billion budget surplus.

A nifty graph:

But, getting back to reality, the NYT article also tells us the following:

In truth, economic analysts said North Dakota has already begun showing some of the painful ripples seen elsewhere. Some manufacturing companies here have lately made temporary job cuts as orders for products have dropped nationally. Shrinking 401(k)’s — “201(k)’s,” some here grump — are no bigger here than anywhere else. And, most of all, drops in oil prices and farm commodity prices are sure to sink local fortunes, experts said.

An economist at Moody’s recently warned that conditions in North Dakota had “slowed measurably in recent months, and the state is now at risk of being dragged into recession.” In an interview, Glenn Wingard, the economist, described North Dakota as “an outlier” up to now in a broad, national slump.

Guess, I won't be moving to North Dakota anytime soon.

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