The rapid growth in Deschutes County’s GDP over the past year was due to rapid growth in the housing sector. Construction, primarily driven by residential building construction, was the largest contributor to local GDP growth over the past year. Construction accounted for around 19 percent of our GDP growth, but the industry only accounts for around 7 percent of the county’s jobs. Based on continued strong job growth in 2016, particularly in the construction industry, expect to see gross domestic product continue to rise into the near future.
Despite the rapid growth in GDP, levels of economic activity remain below pre-recession levels. GDP figures were 1.5 percent lower than the previous peak in 2006 or about $107 million dollars lower. Although total economic output remains below pre-recession levels, total nonfarm employment regained those pre-recession levels in early 2015 and Deschutes County has been in an expansionary period ever since.