Santa Barbara County created $22.3 billion of goods and services in 2016

May 01, 2018

Santa Barbara County created $22.3 billion of goods and services in 2016.

That is the dollar value of our county’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Here is how big our economy looks when we compare our yearly economic output with the outputs of two neighboring counties.

Gross Domestic Product ($ billon)


Ventura County produced almost twice as much economic output as Santa Barbara County. The economic output of Santa Barbara County was almost double that of San Luis Obispo County.

Output per resident showed a different pattern. Santa Barbara County created $50.1 thousand of economic output per capita. Ventura County produced $50.0 thousand per capita. San Luis Obispo County created $44.0 thousand per capita. Ventura County and Santa Barbara were almost equal in output per capita, while San Luis Obispo County produced less.

Each county was unique in its array of industries and their sizes. Each was unique in the skill sets of its residents. The whole State of California produced more economic output per capita ($59.1 thousand) than any of the three counties.


Modest scale of cities and industries attracted visitors and retirees to Santa Barbara County, as did benign climate and varied terrain.

Important sectors of the economy in north Santa Barbara County were tourism and agriculture. The economic output of tourism in Santa Barbara County was $1.7 billion. Economic value of crops at the farm gate in Santa Barbara County was $1.4 billion.


The amounts of county and state GDP are inflation adjusted dollars, using 2009 as the base year.

Please see details of GDP online at U. S. Department of Commerce, Survey of Current Business (April, 2018), Regional Data. View online the economic output of tourism by county on the website of Visit California. See online the crop report of Commissioner of Agriculture, Santa Barbara County.


Posted in Dr. Ken Hardwood.