Rhode Island’s path to recovery from the historic economic downturn could be long and potentially turbulent, as the COVID-19 pandemic further slows growth in the state. The forecast comes from the quarterly Rhode Island Economic Indicator Briefing, published today by the Center for Global and Regional Economic Studies at Bryant University and the Rhode Island Public Expenditure Council (RIPEC).
Bryant economist Edinaldo Tebaldi, Ph.D. plays a key role in preparing the quarterly briefing, providing an important look at the health of the state’s economy compared to the rest of the country. Tebaldi helps calculate Rhode Island’s Current Economic Indicator (CEI), which combines several key gauges of economic activity into a single statistic that measures the overall economic conditions in the state.
Rhode Island trails region, nation for Q4 2020
Despite an expansion of 35.5% in the third quarter of 2020, Rhode Island’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) is projected to have reduced at an annualized rate of 2% in the fourth quarter, trailing both New England’s economy and the United States’ economy, which expanded at an annualized rate 2.8% and 4.0% respectively.
The COVID-19 pandemic exposed underlying structural economic problems in Rhode Island, including slow job growth and economic output. The briefing highlighted that GDP growth has been slow in Rhode Island, relative to the region and nation, since at least 2015, with the pandemic further slowing the growth.
Past Rhode Island Economic Indicator Briefings
- February 2021: “Q4 2020 Current Economic Indictor Briefing Indicates Lengthy Economic Downturn”
- November 2020: “Q3 2020 CEI Shows Patrial Recovery, Constrained Economic Activity”
- August 2020: “CEI for 2020 Shows Historic Contraction of Economic Activity and Employment in RI”
- June 2020: “CEI for Q1 2020, April Jobs Numbers Show Sharp Decline, Uneven Impact of Pandemic on RI Industries”
- February 2020: “Q4 2019 Current Economic Indicator Shows Expanding Economy but Persistent Growth Gap”
- November 2019: “Q3 2019 Current Economic Indictor Shows Steady, Slow Growth”
- August 2019: “Q2 2019 Current Economic Indicator Shows Sluggish GDP Performance”
- May 2019: “Current Economic Indictor Projects Slow Growth Throughout Q1 2019”
- March 2019: “Q4 2018 Current Economic Indictor Shows Stagnant Economy in Rhode Island”
About Edinaldo Tebaldi, Ph.D.
Edinaldo Tebaldi, Ph.D. is a Professor of Economics at Bryant University. He is a member of the Council of Economic Advisors to Rhode Island Governor Gina Raimondo and serves on the Economic Development Planning Council. He previously served as an Economist for the World Bank and as an Advisor for the New England Public Policy Center of the Federal Reserve Bank of Boston.