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Study Shows Shale Activity Boosts Sales, But Employment Slow to Grow

Wednesday, March 20, 2013 at 5:19 PM

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A new report out this week shows Ohio counties in the heart of the Utica Shale have seen a big boost in sales activity over the past year. But as ideastream’s Michelle Kanu reports, those same counties haven’t yet seen a big boost in jobs.

Researchers at Cleveland State University looked at sales activity and employment data in 13 counties in eastern Ohio where there has been a lot of shale gas exploration.  They compared the data in those counties to others that haven’t seen much drilling.

Overall, the counties with a lot of shale production saw a 21 percent jump in sales activity from 2011 to 2012.  Those outside of the drilling hot spots only saw a 7 percent increase.

Iryna Lendel is the assistant director at the center for economic development at Cleveland State.  She says the study is based on data from the Department of Taxation, not consumer surveys, so it’s hard to say exactly WHY sales increased.  But--

Lendel: “It does show a correlation that in counties where the drilling activities take place, people might have more disposable income and it brings economic activity there.”

Lendel says the study also suggests that shale activity isn’t producing a similar increase in jobs.

Lendel: “Employment is not growing as much as sales receipts are growing.  So we can draw the conclusion that it does generate economic activity, however it does not generate as much employment.”

Lendel says further research is needed to understand the economic impact of the burgeoning impact.

Tags

Economy, Regional Economy/Business - Analysis and Trends, Energy, Shale

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