Regional Morsel: Midwestern progress?

While the Midwest’s GDP has lagged other regions, our data suggests a recent uptick supported by a solid labor market.

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David Tinsley

April 2024

Key takeaways

  • The Midwest and the Northeast have been notable GDP laggards since the pandemic when compared to the West and South. However, Bank of America aggregated data on credit and debit card spending suggests a stronger performance by the Midwest of late, supported by the region's solid labor market.
  • Breaking the data down by city/state reveals some variation, with Cleveland, Ohio, a standout success in terms of consumer spending. This is likely in part because investment in the construction of chip and battery plants is not uniform across the region.
  • So can the Midwest close some of the GDP gap to the West and South? Probably, but not without access to skilled labor and affordable housing, which will both require close monitoring from here.

Read our full analysis for a more in-depth look at these trends.

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