RSS Feed

Related Articles

Related Categories

Montana poised to become the next US investment hotspot

27th January 2014 Print
Bakken Oil Field

The Bakken Formation oilfields have generated unprecedented growth and wealth in the US state of North Dakota over the past few years. Now, the neighbouring state of Montana is stepping up to play. While North Dakota has been quick to shout about its success, Montana, whose eastern area is firmly in the heart of the Bakken Oil Region, has been quietly cashing in on its geographical share of the largest oilfield in the US.
Since peaking at 6.8% in July 2010, Montana’s unemployment rate has been falling steadily, reaching 5.2% by November 2013. In some of the counties closest to the Bakken oilfields, in the far east of the state, the unemployment rate had dropped to as little as 1.5% by November, according to the Montana Department of Labor and Industry. Not bad, given the national unemployment rate still sits at 7.0%.
A news release from state Governor Steve Bullock confirmed that job growth in the private sector was leading the economy’s development as at November 2013, with private payroll employment increasing by 1,400 jobs over the month. Governor Bullock comments, “Montana’s economy continues to perform better than the rest of the nation, slowly but surely adding jobs for our workers.”
The impact of the Bakken oilfields has not only improved employment within Montana, but also the wealth of the state’s residents. Historical real per capita income for Montana residents increased by 5.0% from 2009 to 2012, based on figures provided by the Department of Numbers. And it seems that the speed of the increase in wealth is picking up – the improvement from 2011 to 2012 alone stands at 3.1%.
As well as employment directly relating to the oilfields, one of the key industries behind the change is the construction sector, which has been identified by the Montana Department of Labor and Industry as the second fastest industry for projected growth between 2010 and 2020. The department’s predictions project a percentage change of 31.7% for the construction sector over the decade.
One of the leading players in Montana’s construction sector currently is award-winning developer North Dakota Developments LLC, which is building executive hotel accommodation for Bakken Formation energy workers in Culbertson, at the eastern edge of the state. Phase 1 of the developer’s Great American Lodge Montana site, consisting of 300 fully serviced hotel studios, is already under construction. The project follows the success of their Great American Lodge Watford City site in neighbouring North Dakota, which attracted considerable investor interest and sold out in record time.
Great American Lodge Montana is now offering investors the chance to be a part of Montana’s rapid growth, with studio prices ranging from $33,950 for a 50% fraction to $694,400 for a wing of 12 studios. With an independent market study projecting average occupancy rates of 90%, annual rental income for the first year is expected to reach 39%. North Dakota Developments’ Group CEO Robert Gavin comments,
“Montana is definitely one of the most dynamic states in which to invest over the next couple of years. In places like Roosevelt County, which is home to our new Great American Lodge Montana site, there is a severe lack of this kind of accommodation but massive demand, not only from the 250 plus active oil wells in the county, but also from across the state border near Williston, which has become overpopulated and incredibly expensive. The next few years will see a wide range of accommodation construction projects springing up across the state. North Dakota Developments is proud to be creating one of the first.”
Having seen the success generated in North Dakota, it will be fascinating to watch as the story continues to unfold in Montana. According to the US Energy Information Administration, Montana is the US’s 12th largest producer of crude oil when examined by state, not bad considering only the far eastern portion of the state in in the Bakken Oil Region. While the Montana Department of Labor and Industry places Montana as having the 12th lowest unemployment rate in the US, it certainly won’t be long before this dynamic state is moving further up both charts.
For more information on the award-winning North Dakota Developments and their exciting new Great American Lodge developments in the Bakken Oilfields of North Dakota and east Montana, visit and

More Photos - Click to Enlarge

Bakken Oil Field