N. Dakota Sets New Oil Record in January, May Have Passed California to Become No. 3 Oil State
The "Economic Miracle State" of North Dakota pumped another record amount of oil during the month of January at a daily rate of more than 546,000 barrels, which was an increase of 2% and 11,000 barrels per day compared to January, and was 59% above the output level from a year earlier. It’s likely that the new record moved the Peace Garden state ahead of California to become the nation’s No. 3 oil-producing state in January, behind only Texas and Alaska. Recent estimates put California’s oil output at about 535,000 barrels per day, and Alaska’s production at 593,000. If North Dakota continues to increase monthly output at the current rate, it could surpass Alaska by April to become the No. 2 oil-producing state.
As a result of the ongoing oil boom in the Bakken area, North Dakota continues to lead the nation with the lowest state unemployment rate at 3.3% for December, more than five percent below the national average of 8.5% for December. There were 16 North Dakota counties with jobless rates at or below 3% for December, and Williams County, which is at the center of the Bakken oil boom, boasts the lowest county jobless rate in the country at just 1%. According to the Conference Board, there are more advertised online jobs available (17,000) in North Dakota than unemployed workers (12,540), for a Supply/Demand ratio of only 0.74. Nationally, there 12.758 million unemployed workers and 4.383 million advertised openings for a Supply/Demand ratio of 2.91.
Bottom Line: The ongoing record-setting oil production in North Dakota continues to make it the most economically successful state in the country, with record levels of employment and income growth, a labor shortage, increasing tax revenues, the lowest foreclosure rate in the country, a strong real estate market, and jobless rates in many counties of the Bakken region below 3%.