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In the green: Arizona’s GDP growth among best in United States

PHOENIX — Arizona’s gross domestic product growth is among the best in the nation, Gov. Doug Ducey’s office said Thursday.

In a press release, Ducey’s office said Arizona’s GDP is growing at a rate of 2.6 percent, tied for the sixth-fastest growth rate in the nation and the best in the Southwest.

Nearby states, such as Texas and New Mexico, had little growth, while Oklahoma actually saw negative growth.

Ducey’s office said the sectors that contributed to Arizona’s growth were real estate, construction, finance, insurance, information, agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting.

Rick Merrit, an economist with the Elliot D. Pollack Company, said changes to long-stagnant employment numbers sparked the growth.

“A number of years of not seeing any kind of population or very low employment growth, we’re finally starting to see employment start to take off,” he said.

Merrit said as more people begin to work, people will feel better about spending.

“I think there’s a lot more confidence in people and we’re seeing more spending in the economy by Arizona residents,” he said.

Merrit said Arizona should continue to grow so long as housing costs stay low and business costs remain affordable.

The state that saw the most growth was Oregon, followed by Washington, Arkansas, Colorado and New Hampshire.

KTAR’s Ashley Flood contributed to this report.

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