Arthur J. Villasanta – Fourth Estate Contributor
Sacramento, CA, United States (4E) – If the mighty state of California were an independent country, it would be the fifth richest on Earth. And, of course, this makes California the largest economy among all the states in the Union.
California’s economy surpassed that of the United Kingdom in 2017, becoming the world’s fifth largest. The state’s gross domestic product rose to more tan $2.7 trillion, an increase of $127 billion from 2016, according to new federal data.
California’s GDP is now surpassed only by that of the United States, China, Japan and Germany. The Golden State has 12 percent of the U.S. population but contributed 16 percent of the country’s job growth between 2012 and 2017. Its share of the national economy rose from 12.8 percent to 14.2 percent over that five-year period, according to state economists.
All California’s economic sectors, except agriculture, contributed to its higher GDP, said the California Department of Finance. Financial services and real estate contributed the most at $26 billion, followed by the information sector at $20 billion. Manufacturing rose $10 billion.
Analysts said the data illustrates the vastness and strength of California’s economy, especially its technology sector at Silicon Valley, which is the planet’s richest. California is also home to Hollywood, which keeps earning billions from a flood of superhero movies, and Central Valley is the country’s salad bowl. California’s strong economic performance compared to other industrialized economies is driven by worker productivity.
“We have the entrepreneurial spirit in the state, and that attracts a lot of talent and money,” said Sung Won Sohn, an economics professor at California State University Channel Islands. “And that’s why, despite high taxes and cumbersome government regulations, more people are coming into the state to join the parade.”
California’s economic strength is concentrated in coastal metropolises around San Francisco, San Jose, Los Angeles and San Diego. On the other hand, the non-coastal areas haven’t generated nearly as much economic growth as the coastal areas.
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