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Minnesota Budget Outlook and Trends

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The state's budget is influenced by economic conditions, and in return, state budget and policy decisions should be informed by how Minnesotans are being effected by the economy. We provide analysis of the state's economic and budget forecasts as well as research on long-term budget trends.

Research

February 2020

Minnesota should invest in the future: Inside the November 2019 Economic Forecast

The November 2019 Economic Forecast brought some positive news for now, but predicts a more challenging budget situation in the future. Minnesota is in positive budget territory with a $1.3 billion balance projected for the current two-year budget cycle, FY 2020-21. However, that good news is short-lived. Faced with a short-term surplus, policymakers have an opportunity to make some one-time investments.

February 2018

Minnesota needs to prepare for future: Inside the November 2017 Economic Forecast

The November Economic Forecast projects a $188 million deficit for FY 2018-19 and a $586 million deficit for FY 2020-21. This brief examines the forecast’s economic data that show Minnesota’s economy is still doing fairly well, and that the national economy is expected to grow, although at a slower rate than previously projected. These budgetary projections do not include the impact of likely federal tax and budget changes; state policymakers should ensure Minnesota is fully prepared to navigate the uncharted landscape ahead.

February 2017

Caution is key: Inside the February 2017 Economic Forecast

Minnesota continues its positive budget trend, with a $743 million positive balance for the rest of FY 2016-17 and a $1.7 billion projected positive balance for the upcoming FY 2018-19 budget cycle. These projected balances provide opportunities for the state to make smart investments to bring the economic recovery to every part of the state. However, an uncertain federal budget and tax landscape calls for caution. Minnesota lawmakers should avoid large and unsustainable tax cuts that could put our economic future on shaky ground.

January 2017

Uncertainty means caution necessary: Inside the November 2016 Economic Forecast

Minnesota has a projected $678 million positive balance for the remaining months of FY 2016-17, and a projected $1.4 billion positive balance for FY 2018-19. This brief takes a close look at the state's November forecast, which the governor will use as his starting point for setting the next biennial budget. Uncertainty, in both the national economy and with potential federal policy, should signal caution to Minnesota policymakers when considering budget and tax changes.

Budget Outlook and Trends Blog Posts

August 03, 2020

New data confirm states need more federal Medicaid support

Data shows climbing numbers of Minnesotans needing some help to afford care while we’re also seeing massive state revenue shortfalls as a result of the pandemic’s economic disruption. This presents a serious mismatch of needs and resources. An increase to federal Medicaid funding is needed to make sure people can get the health care they need, when they need it.

July 14, 2020

July economic update shows state will need all the tools in the toolbox

The state's quarterly economic report shows that projections for the national economy have gotten even worse. While state revenues have come in a bit ahead of what was predicted in May, the state is still on track for a more than $2 billion budget shortfall for the current budget cycle.

May 05, 2020

May budget report reveals the need to support everyday folks

The May budget projection will guide the decisions that policymakers make in the remaining weeks of the legislative session, and the months beyond. They remind us of how many of our neighbors are struggling, and the importance of taking swift action to reduce the hardships that Minnesotans and their families are facing as a result of the pandemic, and to start building for the economic recovery.

May 04, 2020

Increased Medicaid funding to states protects health care, critical services

While they have taken some preliminary steps, federal decision-makers should further boost the Medicaid dollars it sends to states, make that increase last until the economy recovers, and maintain strong requirements to protect health care coverage.