Monday, January 12, 2015

10 States That Will Be Most Hurt by Falling Oil Prices

A study released by which ranked states based on their rates of oil production, oil consumption and the percentage of oil workers employed in each state’s workforce and what falling oil prices will mean for their economies:

1. North Dakota

North Dakota ranks behind only Texas in total oil production nationally, and is in the top 10 in oil-related jobs. What clinched its spot as the state most impacted by lower oil prices is that because it has a small population, the oil business represents a major portion of its economy. North Dakota has the second-highest proportion of its workforce engaged in oil and gas production, and the net negative impact of the drop in oil prices works out to a whopping $15,920 per person in the state.

2. Wyoming

About 6 percent of the jobs in Wyoming are related to oil and gas extraction, making it the only state to exceed North Dakota in the portion of its workforce at risk from lower oil prices. Because Wyoming's production of oil exceeds its consumption, the net dollar impact of lower oil prices is negative here, and represents the third-highest per-capita loss of any state.

3. Alaska

This state's appearance on the list won't surprise many people, since Alaska is well-known for its oil production. That production compared with Alaska's small population means the collapse of oil prices has an outsized impact on this state.

4. Oklahoma

This is another state with a relatively small population but a big reliance on oil. Oklahoma ranks second only to Texas in its number of oil and gas production jobs, and is fifth nationally in crude oil production.

5. New Mexico

Though it has less than a million jobs across all occupations, New Mexico ranks seventh nationally in oil and gas production jobs. Along with that, it ranks sixth in crude oil production, so the drop in prices is going to hurt here.

6. Colorado

As the state with the fourth-largest oil and gas production workforce, and as the No. 8 producer of oil nationally, Colorado will feel the pinch from lower prices.

7. Montana

Neither the total number of oil-related jobs nor the amount of oil produced in Montana rank in the top 10 nationally, but relative to the state's small population the industry is a significant part of the economy.

8. Texas

Though Texas ranks No. 1 nationally in both the number of oil-related jobs and the amount of oil produced, its large population and diversified economy help soften the impact of falling oil prices, which is why it is not higher on this list.

9. Kansas

This state is the 10th largest oil producer in the nation, and though the number of oil-related jobs ranks outside the top 10, relative to the state's somewhat small population it's enough to have an impact.

10. Utah

This is another state where a relatively small population will exacerbate the impact of the financial hit the state's oil industry will take from falling prices.

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