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USDA: RURAL COUNTIES' ECONOMIES DEPEND ON DIFFERENT INDUSTRIES
Source: USDA news release

Local economies and employment levels are more sensitive to economic trends that have a pronounced effect on their leading industries.

For example, trends in agricultural prices have a disproportionate impact in farming-dependent counties, which accounted for nearly 20 percent of all rural counties and 6 percent of the rural population in 2015.

The boom in U.S. oil and natural gas production increased employment in many mining-dependent rural counties; more recently, lower oil and gas prices have led to reduced oil exploration and economic activity in these counties.

Meanwhile, the decline in manufacturing employment has particularly affected manufacturing-dependent counties, which accounted for about 18 percent of rural counties and 23 percent of the rural population.

This chart appears in the ERS report Rural America at a Glance, 2016 Edition, released November 2016.



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