Employment and Economic Muscle

Employment and Economic Muscle

Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke might think the country is out of the recession, but unemployment is rising from Connecticut to California and banks are taking possession of a growing share of American homes. But some metros across the nation have managed to stay out of the recession's path and could now be poised for recovery. Using data and analysis from the Brookings Institution's new MetroMonitor study, BusinessWeek.com ranked the nation's top 40 economies based on job growth, employment, economic growth, and home prices. And Texas seems to be the clear winner with San Antonio at the top of the list and five metros in the top 10. To see which metros made the list, read on.

The Brookings Institution ranked the 100 largest metros by averaging the ranks for four key indicators: employment change, unemployment change, gross metropolitan product, and home price change. Employment was measured by the change from the peak quarter for each metro to the second quarter of 2009. The peak was the quarter in which the metro had the most jobs during the past five years. Unemployment was ranked by measuring the percentage-point change from the first quarter of 2009 to the second quarter of 2009. Gross metropolitan product was measured from the peak quarter to the second quarter of 2009. And the ranking of home prices compared the second quarter of 2009 to the previous quarter. The employment data were provided by Moody's Economy.com, the unemployment data were collected from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, and the home price index came from the Federal Housing Finance Agency.

Source: The Brookings Institution's MetroMonitor