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John Tepper Marlin

John Tepper Marlin

Posted: August 20, 2008 12:14 AM

America's Metros -- Winners... and Nonwinners

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Oil prices tripled since 2003. Sunshine for the economies of metro areas on the Gulf of Mexico. But a cloud over the metros on the Great Lakes. John McCain's solution in Detroit: more nuclear power plants. Barack Obama's: reducing energy consumption, creating green jobs. These issues aren't going away.

2008-08-20-OilPrices.jpg

The 25 metro areas with the fastest growth in incomes since 2003 are concentrated in the oil-and-gas-producing states like Louisiana, Texas and Mississippi, in the financial markets of Greater New York, and in areas in California and Florida that benefited from the growth of credit through 2007. (Note: The oil-and-gas areas continue to prosper in 2008 as oil prices have held up. Credit, however, is shrinking with every bank writeoff.)

Top 25 Metro Areas: Change in Per Capita Income 2003-2007

Rank - Metro Area - 2007 PC Income $ - % Change from 2003
1 New Orleans-Metairie-Kenner, LA 46,188 57.8
2 Midland, TX 52,294 53.4
3 Naples-Marco Island, FL 61,788 43.4
4 Gulfport-Biloxi, MS 36,390 43.2
5 Sebastian-Vero Beach, FL 58,144 42.7
6 Houma-Bayou Cane-Thibodaux, LA 34,966 40.1
7 Pascagoula, MS 32,992 39.8
8 Odessa, TX 31,788 39.2
9 Jacksonville, NC 34,282 39.0
10 Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood, TX 34,717 38.2
11 Farmington, NM 29,183 37.9
12 Santa Fe, NM 45,230 36.9
13 Punta Gorda, FL 35,151 36.6
14 Santa Barbara-Santa Maria-Goleta, CA 46,120 36.2
15 Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk, CT 80,192 34.7
16 Fayetteville, NC 35,353 34.3
17 Lake Charles, LA 33,448 34.3
18 Casper, WY 47,354 33.5
19 Lafayette, LA 36,853 33.1
20 Tulsa, OK 40,227 32.1
21 Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown, TX 46,235 31.9
22 Bradenton-Sarasota-Venice, FL 48,498 31.2
23 San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont, CA 61,337 31.1
24 Napa, CA 50,817 30.9
25 New York-Northern New Jersey-Long Island, NY-NJ-PA 53,423 30.8
Source: Annual per capita metro income data from U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. See this source for notes on the data for the 363 metro statistical areas. Percent changes from the State Science and Technology Institute.

The cloudy America centered on the Great Lakes includes the industrial areas of Michigan, Ohio, Illinois and Indiana, where manufacturing jobs are losing out to Chinese, European, Japanese and other competitors - compounded by the damage to heavy industry of higher oil costs. The low increase in Merced, CA metro per capita income appears to result from the influx of new immigrants with incomes below the area average. A number of well-known university towns are included in these nonwinning metros.

Bottom 25 Metro Areas: Change in Per Capita Income 2003-2007

Rank - Metro Area - 2007 PC Income $ - % Change from 2003
339 Saginaw-Saginaw Township North, MI 29,304 11.8
340 Springfield, OH 30,471 11.8
341 Danville, IL 27,153 11.7
342 Jackson, MI 28,996 11.6
343 Bay City, MI 30,232 11.5
344 Dover, DE 29,047 10.9
345 Kennewick-Pasco-Richland, WA 30,325 10.9
346 Muncie, IN 28,772 10.8
347 Detroit-Warren-Livonia, MI 39,419 10.7
348 Morristown, TN 25,446 10.5
349 Rockford, IL 30,507 10.4
350 Muskegon-Norton Shores, MI 27,240 10.4
351 Sandusky, OH 35,187 9.7
352 Merced, CA 23,864 9.7
353 Kankakee-Bradley, IL 29,024 9.6
354 Ann Arbor, MI 41,233 9.4
355 Anderson, IN 29,912 9.1
356 Janesville, WI 30,990 9.1
357 Monroe, MI 33,167 9.0
358 Bloomington-Normal, IL 34,832 8.7
359 Mansfield, OH 28,241 7.9
360 Kokomo, IN 33,230 7.1
361 Flint, MI 29,347 5.1
362 Champaign-Urbana, IL 31,931 2.0
363 Springfield, IL 36,229 1.8
Source: Same as Top 25.