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State’s economy is national bright spot

Minnesota has one of the fastest-growing economies in the country, according to a study by the Bureau of Economic Analysis.

The U.S. Commerce Department bureau said Minnesota tied California for fifth place in growth of gross domestic product last year, based on data for durable-goods manufacturing, construction, mining, agriculture, wholesale trade, and finance and insurance.

GDP for Minnesota and California climbed 3.5 percent in 2012, compared with a national average of 2.5 percent. The total value of Minnesota’s GDP was $253 billion, which ranked 17th nationally.

Minnesota also has one of the country’s lowest unemployment rates, ranking 11th nationally in April at 5.3 percent.

The Twin Cities, the state’s major economic engine, had the second-lowest unemployment rate among major U.S. metropolitan areas in April at 4.9 percent.

Oil-rich North Dakota had the fastest-growing economy in 2012, with a GDP growth of 13.4 percent. Texas was second with 4.8 percent growth, followed by Oregon (3.9 percent) and Washington (3.6 percent).

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