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December 13, 2018

Feds: Hartford county leads CT in 2015 economic growth

HBJ File Photo Downtown Hartford's Front Street entertainment district.

The Hartford region’s economy led Connecticut in growth in 2015 after shrinking during the two years prior, according to federal officials.

The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) on Wednesday said Hartford’s real GDP, adjusted for inflation, climbed 4.6 percent in 2015 vs. the year prior. The region’s economy that year rose to over $74.9 billion, ranking second in size behind Fairfield County ($86 billion).

Hartford’s economic surge in 2015 comes after two down years in 2014 and 2013, when the local economy dipped 1.6 percent and 2.7 percent, respectively.

Middlesex County drew the second largest economic uptick in 2015, rising 4.1 percent to $7.8 billion. The region’s economy was nearly flat in 2014 and fell 5 percent in 2013, compared to the years prior.

Trailing in economic growth were New London County (1.9 percent), New Haven County (1 percent), Tolland County (0.7 percent), Fairfield County (0.2 percent) and Windham County was flat. Litchfield County’s economy fell by 1.6 percent.

On average, the economy in Connecticut’s eight counties rose by about 1.3 percent.

By comparison, the economy in 13 Massachusetts counties grew by an average of 2.7 percent. In Rhode Island, the economy increased modestly by about 0.6 percent in five counties.

Nationally, the largest real GDP increases were in Denton County, Texas (12.2 percent), and Santa Clara County, Ca. (11.1 percent). The largest decrease was in Marion County, Ind. (4.2 percent).

The report by BEA, tracking economies in 3,113 counties, was its first providing GDP data for each county in the U.S., according to Secretary of Commerce Wilbur Ross.

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