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600 E. Boulevard Ave.
  Bismarck, ND 58505-0599
  701.328.7088 phone
  701.328.3700 fax
  877.328.7088 toll-free
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE Contact: Kathryn Strombeck, Reasearch Analyst,   701-328-3402
January 18, 2001

Mining and Oil Extraction Posts Strong 3rd Quarter

BISMARCK –Tax Commissioner Rick Clayburgh released figures today that show North Dakota’s economy has slowed, dropping 3.35% during the third quarter of 2000 and the weakest performance since the closing quarter of 1998.  Figures in the report show North Dakota’s total taxable sales and purchases were $1.8 billion, a drop of $62 million from the third quarter 1999.

“The numbers areevidence that North Dakota’s economic growth is slowing down slightly after a remarkably strong run,” said Commissioner Clayburgh.  “The good news is that the mining and oil extraction, the transportation, communication and public utilities, and the wholesale trade sectors did very well during the third quarter”.

Mining and oil extraction numbers rose sharply, increasing over 17.6 percent and the transportation, communication and public utilities rose 8.9 percent.  Wholesale trade numbers were strong, with the farm machinery & farm repair parts sector ahead of third quarter 1999 by 17.5 percent.

“With the upward spike in the price of oil, taxable sales in mining and oil extraction continued to grow at a robust pace,” said Clayburgh.  Clayburgh added, “Three consecutive quarters of growth in this sector is good news for North Dakota’s oil industry, but it will still take time to bounce back to the higher activity levels of prior years.” 

Other sectors reported a decline.  The construction sector reported a drop of 59.3 percent when compared to the unusually high 1999 third quarter levels.  Manufacturing numbers were also soft, falling 7.4 percent from the same quarter, retail trade remained relatively stable dropping less than one percent, and the services sector also reported a slight decline of .9 percent.

“A downturn was expected in the construction sector due to the completion of large, one-time-only projects during 1999,” said Clayburgh, “When comparing the construction sector to a more typical quarter, such as third quarter 1998, there is a less than 4 percent drop.” 

Of the 50 largest cities, the biggest percentage increases for third quarter of 2000 were: Tioga, up 44.6 percent; Kenmare up 40.6 percent; Casselton, up 34.8 percent; Washburn, up 34.1 percent; and New Rockford, up 21.1 percent.

The biggest percentage third quarter decreases for the 50 largest cities, were in Hillsboro, down 20.9 percent; Cando, down 17.6 percent; Harvey, down 17.3 percent; Beulah, down 14.8 percent; and Hazen down 13.8 percent.

Counties with the highest percentage increases were Sioux, up 40.3 percent; Logan, up 39.1 percent; McLean, up 28.8 percent; Renville, up 26.9 percent; and Slope, up 26 percent.

The counties with the biggest percentage decreases were Towner, down 16 percent; Mercer, down 15.5 percent; Wells, down 13.5 percent; Burke, down 11 percent; and Dickey, down 10 percent.

Complete North Dakota Sales and Use Tax Statistical Reports from Third Quarter 2000 can be accessed on the web at: www.nd.gov../forms/sales.html

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