Looking at the local economy since the pandemic began

Looking at the local economy since the pandemic began
Updated: Aug. 19, 2020 at 9:00 AM CDT
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MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) - President Trump is expected to go after rival Joe Biden's economic record during his visit to Mankato.

So we took a closer look at the local economy since the beginning of the pandemic...

Consumer spending hit a steep decline in April but is now heading in the right direction due to a diverse economy.

For example, Blue Earth County, a relatively slow rebounding county comparatively, is slightly below the state average but is significantly higher than what it was in April.

Nicollet County however, has rebounded nicely.

“Nicollet County right now, is only down 3.2% in consumer spending relative to January. There is no one out there who wouldn’t tell you consumer spending wasn’t awesome in January. We were at the height of a major economic boom and we are almost back there in Nicollet County,” said Ryan Vesey, Economic Development Specialist with Greater Mankato Growth.

Figures were only recently released for consumer spending in June and July. While it was good, there was a dropoff once the $600 unemployment checks stopped being distributed.

“Consumer spending on a state level in low-income zip codes, it was higher than it was in January but in high-income zip codes it was actually lower than it was in January. What that is telling me is these $600 unemployment checks did a lot to help people get through this crisis,” said Vesey.

The Mankato metro gained back 3,300 jobs in June, the highest rate of return of any metropolitan area in the state.

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