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North Dakota State Captiol building in Bismarck. (Image: Amber Lien via Flickr)

North Dakota 1st quarter taxable sales drop 33 percent

BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — North Dakota’s Tax Commissioner says the state is returning to a “pre-oil boom economy” due to slumping crude and farm commodity prices.

Ryan Rauschenberger (RAW’-shun-bur-gur) says the state recorded $3.8 billion in taxable sales and purchases during January, February and March. That’s down 33 percent from a record $5.8 billion for the same period a year ago.

North Dakota’s taxable sales and purchases are a key indicator of economic activity in the state.

Data show only three of the North Dakota’s 15 economic sectors grew during the first quarter. North Dakota’s mining and oil extraction sector had the biggest drop for the quarter, with a $716 million decrease.

The retail trade sector is most often a measure of consumer confidence. That sector decreased $128.4 million for the quarter.

In related news, North Dakota’s savings dwindling due to tax collection drop.

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