slides: Worcester Ranked 63rd Best Performing City For Business
Saturday, December 07, 2013
The city improved in longer-term salaries and wages, but it slipped in one-year job growth according to a newly released survey ranking the “best-performing” cities in the nation.
In the Milken Institute's Best-Performing Cities index of 2013, Worcester's overall rank was 63rd out of 200 large metropolitan areas in the United States.
"The fact Worcester is competing well with top cities across the nation on key fundamentals is a good sign we are positioned for continued growth," responded Tim Murray, the head of the Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce.
That rank was up to 34 in 2012, and 41 in 2011. But as recent as 2010, Worcester's position was much lower at 129.
A bright spot in the city's rankings, Worcester perennially does well in the number of “highly concentrated high-tech industries,” which measures the number of high-technology industries compared to the U.S. average.
But the city lagged behind the U.S. average between 2011 and 2012 in both relative growth and high-tech sector output growth.
Job and GDP data came from the recent 2012 fiscal year, while wage and salary figures were taken from up to 2011.
The Milken Institute's “best-performing” cities survey shows where jobs are being created and sustained in metropolitan areas across the nation. The index uses measures of job, wage and technology performance to rank the nation's 200 large metropolitan areas and 179 smaller metros.
The survey's authors said technology and energy were the biggest forces behind the best performers.
"Job creation is the key measure of long-term economic vitality of America's urban areas," according to Ross DeVol, the chief research officer of the Milken Institute and one of the report's authors. "Many of our financial and social challenges can best be addressed by developing local strategies to foster high-quality jobs, and our Best-Performing Cities are showing the way," DeVol said in a prepared statement.
Unlike other "best places" rankings, the institute's survey does not use quality-of-life metrics, such as commute times, housing costs, or crime rates. In the index, employment growth is weighted most heavily due to its importance to community vitality, while wage and salary growth measures the quality of jobs.
Geographic areas are divided along the terms and definitions used by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget. In the Worcester region, that population amounted to 806,163.
Other regions in New England
Among the best performers in the Northeast, the Cambridge-Newton-Framingham region in Massachusetts topped New England at 23rd, down from 8th in 2012.
Boston-Quincy kept its 46th ranking, while the Peabody region northeast of Boston fell from 17th to 50th this year.
Related Slideshow: New England’s Best Performing Cities 2013: Milken Institute Study
Which cities and metropolitan areas in New England are poised for bright growth prospects? Which lag behind? Below are New England's Best Performing Cities as ranked by The Milken Institute in their national study, "Best-Performing Cities 2013."
#12 Providence-New Bedford-Fall River RI-MA
2013 Rank: 148
2012 Rank: 130
5-yr Job Growth Rank: 144
1-yr Job Growth Rank: 161
5-yr Wage/Salary Growth Rank: 127
1-yr Wage/Salary Growth Rank: 122
5-yr Relative High Tech GDP Growth Rank: 47
1-yr Relative High Tech GDP Growth Rank: 147
#10 Portland-South Portland-Biddeford ME
2013 Rank: 137
2012 Rank: 91
5-yr Job Growth Rank: 86
1-yr Job Growth Rank: 165
5-yr Wage/Salary Growth Rank: 98
1-yr Wage/Salary Growth Rank: 146
5-yr Relative High Tech GDP Growth Rank: 101
1-yr Relative High Tech GDP Growth Rank: 103
#8 Bridgeport-Stamford-Norwalk CT
2013 Rank: 106
2012 Rank: 94
5-yr Job Growth Rank: 125
1-yr Job Growth Rank: 132
5-yr Wage/Salary Growth Rank: 129
1-yr Wage/Salary Growth Rank: 49
5-yr Relative High Tech GDP Growth Rank: 183
1-yr Relative High Tech GDP Growth Rank: 190
#7 Rockingham County-Strafford County NH
2013 Rank: 91
2012 Rank: 60
5-yr Job Growth Rank: 66
1-yr Job Growth Rank: 123
5-yr Wage/Salary Growth Rank: 128
1-yr Wage/Salary Growth Rank: 106
5-yr Relative High Tech GDP Growth Rank: 62
1-yr Relative High Tech GDP Growth Rank: 185
#6 Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford CT
2013 Rank: 85
2012 Rank: 93
5-yr Job Growth Rank: 100
1-yr Job Growth Rank: 136
5-yr Wage/Salary Growth Rank: 99
1-yr Wage/Salary Growth Rank: 72
5-yr Relative High Tech GDP Growth Rank: 77
1-yr Relative High Tech GDP Growth Rank: 76
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