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The Top 5: States That Have Not Recovered

The Dakotas have fared well since 2007 because of the oil boom that is going on there.

| BY Kent McDill

In general, the United States has recovered from the financial downfall it suffered in 2008.

In specific, not so much.

While many states have found a way to make the most of the economic opportunities that have come forth since the recession six years ago, some states still have not done so. According to the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Economic Analysis, the five worst state economies are spread out across the entire continental U.S.

Two of the top economies, from a state-by-state point of view, are the Dakotas, thanks to the new influx of oil-related industry.

RELATED: States with the Highest Minimum Wage

Looking at the state’s Gross Domestic Product from 2007 to 2013, the top five biggest losers are:

Nevada (down 10 percent since 2007) – Historically, Nevada has based its economy on construction, tourism and real estate, of which it still has a great deal available. But construction still has not fully recovered from the recession, and the downturn also negatively affected tourism and real estate, two industries still making the move back to pre-recession levels. Nevada is creating opportunities in education and health services, plus an increase in mining has helped a bit.

Florida (down 7 percent) – Similar to Nevada, Florida depends on construction and real estate for much of its GDP. Tourism, too, plays a role. Miami and Orlando are building once again, but there are reports of a skilled labor shortage in the state. Health care has always been a big business in the state where elderly Americans park themselves, and the business continues to help the state out of its depressed situation.

Connecticut (down 5 percent) – The insurance industry has long been a staple of Connecticut’s economy, and the recession affected that industry. But Connecticut has also long been home to the chemical manufacturing sector, which remains down after a boom around the turn of the century. Connecticut expects to get a jump in its GDP from continued growth in telecommunications.

Arizona (down 4 percent) – As with Nevada and Florida, construction, real estate and tourism make up much of the state’s business, and those areas have not yet recovered. The construction situation was so bad in Arizona that two industry trade groups filed for bankruptcy since 2007. Electronics manufacturing is now helping the state make its recovery.

Michigan (down 3 percent) – When Detroit is your biggest city, and it files for bankruptcy, the state’s economy as a whole is going to suffer. The problems which plagued the automobile industry since the recession are well-known and the fact the recovery was boosted by federal funds does not help the overall GDP. The vehicle manufacturing business remains almost 30 percent below 2007 levels, although large automobile parts business is closer to reaching the levels from before the recession.

The five states with the best recovery percentages are North Dakota (up 71 percent), Oregon (plus 22), Texas (plus 19), South Dakota (plus 18) and Nebraska (plus 15).


About the Author

Kent McDill


Kent McDill is a staff writer for Millionaire Corner. McDill spent 30 years as a sports writer, working for United Press International and the Daily Herald of Arlington Heights, Ill. From 1988-1999, he covered the Chicago Bulls for the Daily Herald, traveling with them every day through the nine-month season. He also covered the Bulls for UPI from 1985-88, and currently covers the team for www.nba.com. He has written two books on the Bulls, including the new title “100 Things Bulls Fans Should Know And Do Before They Die’, published by Triumph Books. In August 2013, his new book “100 Things Bears Fans Should Know And Do Before They Die” gets published.

In 2008, he resigned from the Herald and became a freelance writer. The Herald hired him to write business features and speeches for the Daily Herald Business Conferences and Awards presentations.

McDill also writes a monthly parenting column for the Herald’s Suburban Parent magazine.

McDill is the father of four children, and an active fan of soccer, Jimmy  Buffett and all things Disney.