Economy of Nebraska

By | March 4, 2023

Nebraska is an agricultural powerhouse in the United States, with a strong focus on food production and processing. The state has a diversified economy, with its agricultural sector accounting for roughly one-third of the state’s gross domestic product (GDP). Traditional sectors such as manufacturing, finance and insurance, and retail trade also account for a significant portion of employment in the state.

Agriculture is Nebraska’s primary economic activity and accounts for about 30 percent of total GDP. The state is home to more than 500 million acres of farmland, which is used to grow corn, soybeans, sorghum, hay and other crops. Livestock production also plays an important role in Nebraska’s agricultural economy. Beef cattle are the most important livestock in the state; Nebraska is home to more than 6 million head of cattle. Other important livestock include hogs and sheep.

Manufacturing contributes significantly to Nebraska’s economy; it accounts for about 10 percent of total GDP. Automotive parts manufacturing is particularly significant in the state; many major auto parts suppliers have facilities located in Nebraska. Other major manufacturers include chemical producers, food processing companies, electronics producers and machinery makers.

The financial services sector also plays an important role in the state’s economy; it contributes about 5 percent of GDP. Insurance companies are particularly prominent in this sector; several large firms have their headquarters located in Omaha or Lincoln. Banking services are also widely available throughout the state; there are numerous community banks that serve rural areas as well as larger banks that operate statewide or even nationally.

Retail trade is another key industry for Nebraska’s economy; it accounts for approximately 7 percent of total GDP. Department stores are particularly prominent throughout the state; Omaha alone has several large shopping malls that feature major national retailers such as Macy’s, Kohl’s and Target among others. There are also numerous smaller retailers scattered throughout rural areas that provide basic goods such as clothing and groceries to local communities.

Tourism is another important source of revenue for Nebraska’s economy; it contributes roughly 1 percent to total GDP annually due to visitors who come from all over the world to enjoy attractions like Chimney Rock National Historic Site or Scotts Bluff National Monument among others.

Overall, Nebraska has a diversified economy that includes traditional sectors such as agriculture, manufacturing, financial services and retail trade along with newer industries such as tourism which provide jobs and revenue throughout the entire.

Top 3 Counties in Nebraska

According to, main counties in Nebraska include:

1. Douglas County: Located in the eastern part of Nebraska, Douglas County is the most populous county in the state. It is home to Omaha, the largest city in Nebraska, as well as many other smaller cities and towns. The county’s population is nearly 600,000 people. Douglas County has a vibrant economy with a variety of businesses, including finance and insurance companies, healthcare organizations, manufacturing plants, and some of the state’s best-known attractions such as Henry Doorly Zoo and Aquarium and TD Ameritrade Park Omaha. The county also has several universities and colleges that contribute to its economic growth. In addition to its strong economic base, Douglas County offers plenty of recreational activities for residents to enjoy such as biking paths, golf courses, parks and more.

2. Lancaster County: Also located in eastern Nebraska is Lancaster County which houses Lincoln – the capital city of Nebraska – along with many other smaller communities such as Hickman and Waverly. The county’s population is over 300,000 people with an economy based on agriculture, manufacturing and services sectors. Lancaster County has several universities within its borders that contribute to its economy including University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) which is one of the largest employers in the area. There are also plenty of recreational activities available for residents including cycling trails at Pioneers Park Nature Center or golfing at Hillcrest Country Club.

3. Sarpy County: Located just south of Omaha in eastern Nebraska is Sarpy County which has a population close to 180,000 people living in cities like Bellevue and Papillion. Sarpy has a diverse economy with businesses ranging from retail stores to technology companies that have contributed to its growth over the years. The county also offers plenty of recreational activities for residents such as fishing at Lake Zorinsky or camping at Platte River State Park. Additionally there are several historical sites located throughout Sarpy that give visitors insight into its past such as Fort Atkinson State Historical Park or Fontenelle Forest Nature Center.

Economy of Nebraska