According to a recent survey, the recovery is in full swing in America’s largest cities. Last week, Gallup released results of its Job Creation Index for the 50 largest metropolitan regions in the United States. The results showed that companies in every city were hiring more often than they were firing. 24/7 Wall St. reviewed the nine U.S. metropolitan regions where workers think hiring is strongest.
An examination of these cities suggests that workers have reason to be confident. The vast majority had among the best employment conditions in the country. Nearly every city had either excellent current employment rates, major declines in unemployment rates in the past year, or both.
The Job Creation Index scores assigned by Gallup reflect the difference between the number of workers reporting their businesses were hiring compared to those who believed people were being let go. According to the report, these nine cities received Job Creation Index scores of 20 or better, meaning the percentage of employees who believed their companies were hiring was at least 20% more than those who believed their employers were looking to makes cuts to the payroll.
Of these nine cities, six had unemployment rates well below the national average of 8.3%. Richmond, Va., reported an unemployment rate of 6.6% in January. Oklahoma City’s unemployment rate of 5.9% is the seventh-lowest among the 100 largest cities in the U.S.
While a low unemployment rate can make a worker feel positive about his or her job market, having a low rate does not mean employers are hiring at a faster rate than the rest of the country. Declines in unemployment show that the number of unemployed are decreasing, usually because corporations are increasing the number of people on their payroll. According to the report, six of the these cities’ unemployment rates improved a great deal, falling more than 10% in the past year alone.
Most of these cities’ labor markets remained fairly stable during the recession with relatively few job losses. Five of the nine either will almost recover or will have fully recovered jobs lost during the recession by the fourth quarter of 2012.
In addition to Gallup’s Job Creation Index, 24/7 Wall St. examined unemployment data from January 2011 and January 2012, based on data from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Declines in employment from prerecession peaks and projected recovery of jobs by the fourth quarter of 2012 also were considered, based on analysis by IHS Global Insight.
These are nine cities where jobs are booming.