By DON FENLEY
TRI-CITIES, Tenn. – A new county-level economic report from the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) affirms what other reports have been showing. Washington County’s economy is on a roll, and all the region’s counties posted economic gains from the previous year. The report measures the first-year economic performance since the pandemic.
What makes the performance of the Washington Co. economy different is its year-over-year Gross Domestic Product (GDP) growth rate and annual growth pattern have been positive every year since 2017. GDP is the total market value of all finished goods and services produced within the county. Washington Co.’s growth rate is also 26% better than the county with the region’s second-best year-over-year growth in the current BEA report. And from various earlier reports, we know it is seeing the strongest population growth and has the highest short-and-long-term population growth projection for the region. It also has the dominant market share of existing single-family home sales in all but the $100,000 to $199,999 price range.
Overall, the immediate market area called the Tri-Cities encompasses about 540,000 people and has a $27.8 billion economy.
Here’s how the most current all-industry GDP looks for the region’s counties compared to the previous year and in current dollars.
- Washington TN – up 9.1% – $7.4 billion
- Greene – up 7.2% – $2.8 billion
- Unicoi – up 6.9% – $652 million
- Sullivan – up 6.2% – $8.97 billion
- Washington + Bristol VA – up 5.2% – $3.9 billion
- Carter – up 5% – $1.2 billion
- Hawkins – up 4.5% $1.8 billion
- Johnson – up 3.2% – $490 million
- Scott VA – up 2.4% – $464 million
Some of the Washington Co. highlights are:
- Arts, entertainment, and recreation – up 59.3%
- Accommodation and food services – up 23%
- Professional, scientific, technical services – up 22.8%
- Administrative, support, remediation services – up 19.5%
- Real estate, rentals, leasing – up 15.8%
- Manufacturing – up 13%
- Information – up 12.1%
- Wholesale trade – up 10.7%
- Retail trade – up 5.2%
- Health care and social assistance – up 3.6%
- Construction – down 4.9%
- Management of companies – down 13.6%
Transportation and warehousing data were not disclosed “to avoid disclosure of confidential information.” Data from the agriculture, forestry, fishing, and hunting sector was also not disclosed.
Highlights from other counties will be posted in this space in the coming weeks.