Worried about the future? You're not alone but it doesn't mean you're going to have start loading the family up in a truck and go pick grapes in California like John Steinbeck's Joad family in The Grapes of Wrath. What it does mean, though, is that even in a recession some communities will fare better than others. And it's not necessarily just the rich ones. What will be most important will be to find communities where the local economy will be relatively unscathed. That means that in the near term people who work in critical fields such as health care and education are likely to enjoy greater job security than those who work in sectors such as financial services or construction. That does not mean these communities will be recession-proof, but it does mean they may be hurt less than others. So where are these communities? Read on to find out.
Editor's Note: The job data for each town was provided by Claritas using U.S. Census Bureau employment categories. Towns that had populations of less than 200,000 and unemployment rates of more than 6.1%, such as Bakersfield, Sacramento, Fresno, and San Diego, were not included in the list. The metro area unemployment rate is a preliminary estimate for August from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. "Professional, Scientific and Technical Services" includes legal services, accounting, tax preparation, bookkeeping, and payroll. Data for some strong sectors such as energy were not available, or were part of broader categories that included significantly weak sectors. The weak economy is expected to damage all sectors, but the list is meant to highlight places that are buffered by relatively strong industries.
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