Economic growth in state has officials hopeful for poverty decrease

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Recent economic growth has state officials optimistic that a new report coming out this week will show a lower poverty rate in Minnesota.

Most areas of the state saw economic growth in 2012, according to a report from the Pioneer Press. Data out Tuesday said the U.S. Census Bureau Economic Analysis showed that the real value of goods and services in the Twin Cities metropolitan area was up 3.9 percent when adjusted for inflation. That kept the area's economy ranked 13th among metro areas in the country, and had the fifth-best growth rate nationally last year.

Growth across the rest of the state was uneven, including a 2 percent decline in the Duluth-Superior area.

Minnesota Public Radio reports that U.S. Census Bureau numbers show the national poverty rate unchanged at 15 percent.

State Demographer Susan Brower said that falling unemployment makes the Minnesota picture more complicated. Brower added that unemployment is closely tied to poverty, so she believes there is hope for improvement in Minnesota.

State data within the national report shows Minnesota's poverty rate is unchanged at 10 percent, although officials say more specific data is due out on Thursday.

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