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New GDP report shows strong growth for El Paso County


El Paso’s economy grew faster than the nation in 2018, according to recently released data.

Total goods and services produced in El Paso County reached $32.4 billion in 2018, according to a Bureau of Economic Analysis report released on Dec. 12. The report focused on the gross domestic product of each county and metropolitan statistical area in the country.

El Paso’s GDP grew by an inflation adjusted 3.2 percent in 2018, compared to 2.9 percent nationally. Texas GDP grew by 4 percent between 2017 and 2018, according to the BEA.

Private services-providing industries accounted for 59 percent of El Paso’s GDP in 2018 and grew by an inflation-adjusted 6.9 percent over 2017, according to the BEA. The remainder of El Paso County’s economy grew by less than 1 percent.

According to the BEA, private services-providing industries “consist of utilities; wholesale trade; retail trade; transportation and warehousing, excluding Postal Service; information; finance and insurance; real estate, rental, and leasing; professional, scientific, and technical services; management of companies; administrative and support and waste management and remediation services; educational services; health care and social assistance; arts, entertainment, and recreation; accommodation and food services; and other services (except government and government enterprises).”

New Mexico, which has struggled to recover from the effects of the Great Recession, saw its GDP increase by 2.5 percent in 2018, the state’s best performance in years.

Doña Ana County, which saw its economy shrink in 2017, rebounded in 2018 with a modest 0.7 percent increase in GDP, according to the BEA.

Robert Moore

Robert Moore is the founder and CEO of El Paso Matters. He has been a journalist in the Texas Borderlands since 1986. He spent most of his career at the El Paso Times, serving in a variety of leadership roles. His work has received a number of top journalism honors including the Burl Osborne award for editorial leadership, the James Madison Award from the Texas Freedom of Information Foundation, the Jack Douglas Award from Texas Associated Press Managing Editors and the Frank W. Mayborn Award for Community Leadership from the Texas Press Association. In 2013, he was the recipient of the Benjamin C. Bradlee Editor of the Year Award from the National Press Association. As a freelance journalist, Moore’s work has appeared in the Washington Post, Texas Monthly, ProPublica, National Public Radio, The Guardian and other publications. He has been featured as an expert on the border by CNN, MSNBC, BBC, CBC and PBS.

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