Today the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Bureau of Economic Analysis released new personal income data for the first quarter of 2011 by state (pdf) and revisions for the past couple of years. As shown in Chart 1, Maine’s private sector share of personal income for the first quarter of 2011 was at 63.4 percent–or 8.4 percent smaller than the national average. While this is the highest point since the fourth quarter of 2009, the private sector has essentially been moving sideways.
Chart 2 shows the major culprit behind this crowding-out of the private sector since the beginning of the “Great Recession”–the Orwellian American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA). In the first quarter of 2011, the ARRA pumped $171 million into Maine’s economy via personal current transfer receipts (pdf). This is down from the peak spending ($443 million) under ARRA in the second quarter of 2009. As ARRA spending continues to wind-down, this will help Maine’s private sector rebound from its all-time lows though it puts a drag on overall personal income growth.
If you’re interested, you can view a chart with a Maine versus New Hampshire private sector comparison here.