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Virginia Economy Trails Historical Average and National Growth Rate

Center for Economic Analysis and Policy

The Great Recession happened almost a decade ago.  But Virginia’s economy is still struggling to recover.

A new report from Old Dominion University’s Center for Economic Analysis and Policy shows recovery from the downturn remains agonizingly slow. Robert McNab is deputy director at the center, and he predicts a 1.8 percent growth rate for Virginia in 2017. That’s below the historical average for Virginia and below the growth rate for the U.S.

“If we see stagnation in terms of federal spending in Virginia, then the Virginia economy essentially underperforms that of the United States,” McNab said.

The bad news is that the economy is sluggish. The good news is that this year will likely be the first year in a decade that the growth rate will be more than one percent.

“What we’ve seen over the last decade, especially coming out of the Great Recession, is that Virginia has grown. But it has grown very intermittently, and relative to the United States, especially this year, has fallen behind in terms of economic performance”

Richmond is the only city in Virginia where the economic growth rate has been anywhere close to the national average.

Click here for more from the Center for Economic Analysis and Policy

This report, provided by Virginia Public Radio, was made possible with support from the Virginia Education Association.

Michael Pope is an author and journalist who lives in Old Town Alexandria. He has reported for NPR, the New York Daily News and the Alexandria Gazette Packet. He has a master's degree in American Studies from Florida State University, and he is a former adjunct professor at Tallahassee Community College. He is the author of four books.