RI Key Performance Indicators Briefing for Q2 2023 Suggests Economic Growth Has Stalled

PROVIDENCE, RI – Rhode Island’s economy experienced no GDP growth and mixed results across key economic metrics, according to the Rhode Island Key Performance Indicators (KPI) Briefing for Q2 2023, released today. The Briefing, completed by The Center for Global and Regional Economic Studies at Bryant University and the Rhode Island Public Expenditure Council (RIPEC), found slight improvement in the unemployment rate and labor force participation rate quarter-over-quarter, but no improvement year-over-year, while Rhode Island-based jobs declined both quarter-over-quarter and year-over-year.

“Rhode Island’s economy has been growing over the last several years, but recently growth has slowed, and now the data appears to indicate that economic expansion has stalled out,” said RIPEC President and CEO Michael DiBiase. “We do not have enough data at this point to know for sure where the economy is heading, but given these warning signs, third quarter data could indicate a turning point in Rhode Island’s economic outlook,” DiBiase cautioned.   

While  the New England region and the U.S. experienced quarter-over-quarter job creation in Q2 2023, Rhode Island experienced a decrease in jobs. Rhode Island-based jobs (non-farm employment) decreased by 1.0 percent (4,800 jobs) in Q2 2023. The Ocean State had 10,100 fewer jobs than before the pandemic and six of Rhode Island’s nine major industry sectors lost jobs in Q2 2023. Both the nation and region have regained all jobs lost during the pandemic. The number of employed Rhode Islanders increased in Q2 2023 (by 0.5 percent), but there were 1,500 fewer employed Rhode Islanders than before the pandemic, and 3,900 fewer employed Rhode Islanders than in Q2 2022.

Rhode Island has trailed the region and nation in GDP growth for the last two decades, and in Q1 2023 Rhode Island GDP growth was essentially flat, increasing by 0.1 percent over Q4 2022 (annualized), while New England and the U.S. experienced growth of 1.6 percent and 2.0 percent respectively. GDP data from Q2 2023 are not yet available.

The data set used to create the Briefing is available here.

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