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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

Contact: Rick Clayburgh, 701-328-2770 

April 25, 2002

Kathryn Strombeck, Research Analyst,             701-328-3402

North Dakota Taxable Sales And Purchases Strong in 2001

BISMARCK --- Tax Commissioner Rick Clayburgh released a key statistical report today that shows strong taxable sales and purchases for the year 2001. Taxable sales and purchases exceeded $7.147 billion as compared to $6.829 billion for 2000, an increase of almost five percent.

“This is an upbeat report and reflects North Dakota’s resiliency,” said Commissioner Clayburgh. “North Dakota's economy experienced generally strong consumer confidence in spite of the events surrounding the September 11 tragedies.”

Due to a 35.9 percent increase in the energy industry, total taxable sales and purchases for the transportation, communication and public utilities sector rose by 18.9 percent in 2001 compared to 2000 figures.

“North Dakota’s energy industry is in a growth cycle,” said Clayburgh, “and the opportunities associated with that growth will help stimulate the local and state economies.”

Oil and gas extraction activity rose by 19.9 percent during 2001, contributing to the mining and oil extraction sector’s overall increase of 8.2 percent. Wholesale trade rose by over 6.5 percent, the services sector rose by 3.4 percent, and retail trade increased by 3.2 percent during 2001.

Retail trade, the largest of the industry categories, contributed the most to the overall amount of growth, increasing by more than $110 million from 2000.

Clayburgh said, “A robust retail sector, such as what we had in 2001, is often used as a measure of the overall health of the economy.”

Clayburgh was pleased to see growth in the wholesale trade industry which includes a 15 percent increase in sales of farm machinery and farm repair parts compared to 2000.

“Farming and farm-related business are a significant element of our state’s economy,” said Commissioner Clayburgh. “Our office continues to watch closely for signs of any lingering effects that a national recession may have on our farmers as well as the rest of our state overall.”

The construction sector was the only sector experiencing a downturn in taxable sales and purchases for 2001 - dropping by 20.4 percent compared to 2000. Clayburgh attributed the drop in construction to the completion of a large one-time project during 2001.

“The decline was largely expected,” said Clayburgh, “We anticipate the numbers will level off to reflect normal activity during 2002.”

Included in the annual report are statistics for each of the state’s 53 counties. Grant County led all counties with increases in 2001, with a 22.5 percent growth over 2000. LaMoure County was next, increasing by 21.5 percent; McLean County was up 18.7 percent; Slope County was up by 17.5 percent; and Ransom County up by 15.9 percent. The counties registering the sharpest decline were Sioux County with a drop of 21.4 percent; followed by Sheridan County down 17.8 percent; Sargent County down 12.4 percent; Griggs County down 9.3 percent; and Kidder County down 9.2 percent.

The complete North Dakota Sales and Use Tax Statistical Report for 2001 can be accessed on the Office of State Tax Commissioner’s website:   www.nd.gov/tax

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