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US / Population Growth Does Not Equal Economic Growth writes Richard Florida

When we think of the growth of cities and metros, we often think in terms of population growth. But this growth bears little relation to economic growth, and it’s a terribly misleading indicator of it.

As I wrote in my feature on economic recovery for The Atlantic, while many people use population as a way to gauge regional growth or decline, it actually tells us little about economic growth. To shed light on the connection — or, really, lack of  one — between population growth and economic growth, my team and I tracked not just the recovery period but also for the entire decade of the 2000s.

Using figures from the U.S. Census and the Bureau of Economic Analysis, José Lobo of Arizona State University and my colleagues at the Martin Prosperity Institute examined the trends in population growth and productivity growth (measured as economic output per capita) for all 350-plus U.S. metros over the decade spanning 2001 to 2011.

Their main conclusion: There is little, if any connection, between the two. Roughly 46 percent metros had above average population growth, while 43 percent had above average productivity growth over this period. Here’s the rub: Across the nation, fewer than one in five metros (19 percent) experienced both population growth and productivity growth over the past decade. There was no statistical association between the two, according to the team’s analysis.

The map below by MPI’s Zara Matheson charts the average annual population growth rate by metro.

The blue areas (those with the highest rates of growth) are mainly in the Sunbelt — the South and West with the exception of the California coastline. The California coast and the Northeast are lighter green indicating much more moderate growth, while the Midwest is yellow indicating low or no growth.

Capture d’écran 2013-10-01 à 08.24.52

Chosen excerpts by Job Market Monitor. Read the whole story at 

Capture d’écran 2013-10-01 à 08.26.56

via The Great Growth Disconnect: Population Growth Does Not Equal Economic Growth – Richard Florida – The Atlantic Cities.

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