One of the strengths of the United States is its diverse economy, which comprises many industries that contribute to overall economic development and greater stability. Total U.S. economic output topped $16 trillion in 2015, and each state’s contribution to overall GDP was unique, both in terms of size and industrial composition.
For example, California, New York, and Texas each generated over $1 trillion in economic output in 2015. Combined, these three states accounted for 31% of the nation’s total economic output. Each state’s unique economic landscape is shaped by a range of factors, from legal regulations to the presence natural resources. For example, with the nation’s largest oil reserves, oil and gas extraction drives Texas’s economy. Meanwhile, since removing certain banking restrictions, credit intermediation drives the South Dakota economy
> Largest industry: Hospitals and nursing and residential care facilities
> Industry GDP contribution: $17.0 billion
> Industry output as pct. of GDP: 4.0%
> Industry workforce: 908,145
Perhaps somewhat surprising, auto manufacturing is not the largest industry in Michigan. Rather, the hospitals and nursing facilities industry is. The state has many such facilities, and they have a major impact on Michigan’s economy. The state is also home to Beaumont and Spectrum Health Butterworth — two of the largest hospitals in the United States, with over 1,000 beds each. Hospitals and residential care facilities generated $17.0 billion in 2015, more than any other industry in the state.
Real estate is by far the largest industry in the United States and the largest contributor to GDP in most states. But since housing is a universal need irrespective of geography, it fails to illuminate regional economic differences. In order to capture the unique economic features of each state, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed the largest industry in each state by GDP contribution — excluding real estate.