In what is probably very bad news for Gov. Tom Corbett, a new study suggests that Pennsylvania’s economy is … not good.
Pennsylvania held up better than most states during the recession of 2008 and 2009 and early portion of the recovery. But a Wells Fargo & Co. survey finds that thestate’s recovery has slowed in the past couple of years, citing a slowdown in natural gas exploration due to price increases, declining momentum in the service sector and a sluggish housing recovery.
Pennsylvania job growth has lagged behind the national average recently, the study says. Nonfarm employment grew just 0.7 percent over the past year, compared to a 1.7 percent gain nationwide. Goods producers, government, and retail/ wholesale trade are the principal drags on the state’s economy.
Gross domestic product grew by 1.7 percent in Pennsylvania, below the 2.5 percent national average this year.
But Wells Fargo is predictin a slightly rosier future, as the impact of public-sector cutbacks diminishes. “Job and income growth should improve and the unemployment rate should resume its gradual decline, which should boost consumption and breathe new life in the retail industry.”