By Associated Press - Thursday, December 17, 2020

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - North Dakota’s taxable sales and purchases for the third quarter of 2020 decreased 19.5% percent over the same time period the previous year.

Tax Commissioner Ryan Rauschenberger said taxable sales and purchases for July, August and September totaled $4.72 billion.

Rauschenberger said the report released Thursday reflects a similar drop reported in the second quarter. He said the drop “is due to economic disruptions related to the coronavirus and decreasing oil prices.”

North Dakota’s taxable sales and purchases are a key indicator of economic activity in the state. They also are used to forecast state budgets.

Thirteen of the 15 major industry sectors reported losses over the year. The mining and oil extraction sector decreased by $530 million, or about 64%. The wholesale trade sector decreased by $421 million, about a 31 percent drop.

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