CALIFORNIA — California’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) has grown consistently faster than the nation’s as a whole for four straight years. In 2015, the California GDP rose 5.6 percent, while the U.S. GDP increased 3.7 percent (unadjusted for inflation).
Also called “economic output,” GDP measures the market value of goods, services and structures that are produced within a particular period, and tends to be related to population, income, spending, employment, housing permits and other measures of economic activity.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, the New York-Newark-Jersey City metropolitan area led the nation with an economic output of about $1.603 trillion in 2015.
California was represented by two of the top 10 areas: Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim ($930.8 billion), and San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward ($431.7 billion). The Los Angeles metropolitan area accounts for 37.9 percent of California’s GDP, while the San Francisco Bay Area comprises 17.6 percent.
San Jose has been the fastest growing metropolitan area within California — and the second fastest in the United States — with stronger economic growth than 380 of the nation’s 382 metropolitan areas in 2015.
With growth rates that ranged from 5.0 percent to 10.4 percent over the past five years, the San Jose area had the largest increase in that time frame — 37.6 percent — more than 60 percent higher than the California average gain of 23.1 percent, for a total GDP of more than $235 billion.
Napa (29.6 percent), Vallejo-Fairfield (27.4 percent), San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward (26.5 percent), and Santa Rosa (25.7 percent) all finished higher than the state average as well. Santa Rosa had an especially strong 2015, finishing second in the state with a 9.3 percent increase.
“Once again San Jose was among the fastest growing regions economically, not just in California, but in the U.S. as well,” said Board of Equalization member Fiona Ma. “I am so proud to represent businesses in the Silicon Valley, San Francisco, Oakland and Santa Rosa — which all saw growth that was higher than the state average.”
One way to compare economic wellbeing among regions is to calculate inflation-adjusted GDP per capita. Real economic output per capita in the San Jose area was close to twice that of the California average in 2015. Other areas with higher than average per capita real GDP include San Diego and Napa.