Ten-Gallon Economy: Sizing Up Economic Growth in Texas

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Texas' economic growth has consistently outpaced that of the United States as a whole over the past quarter century. What accounts for the state's economic success? And does it come at a price to be paid in the future? Ten-Gallon Economy features new research on regional economic growth and some surprising findings on Texas' unique tax and banking institutions, booming energy and export sectors, vibrant labor market, expanding demographics and human capital, and growing border economy. Texas has a dynamic economy, large yet flexible, but it is still subject to the booms and busts of the energy sector, which exercises an outsized influence. Taxes are low but regressive relative to national benchmarks, which fuels growth but can inhibit investment in education and health. Meanwhile, Texas, as one of only five minority-majority states, is poised to reap a big demographic dividend if it invests wisely in the coming generation of mostly Latino workers. Taken together, the chapters in this volume provide unique insight into the economy of the nation's second-largest state, laying out some of the choices facing policymakers charged with safeguarding the Texas growth premium for future generations.