Charlotte area ranked 7th best city for job seekers in US, study says

Published: Jun. 29, 2021 at 4:44 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - The Charlotte area, including Concord and Gastonia, ranked #7 among the best places in America for people to find a job, according to a recent study.

MoneyGeek, a company based around financial decision making, compared over 50 cities with labor forces of at least 500,000 and analyzed five economic factors, including wage and job growth, unemployment rate, the size of the labor force and housing affordability, to rank the top cities in the United States for job seekers.

Charlotte compiled a total overall score of 83.1, enough to land the city at 7th place in the rankings. This put them between Tampa, Florida and St. Louis, Missouri.

When it comes to job growth, MoneyGeek explained there are many reasons that cities grow and one of the biggest actions that spur job growth is when a city attracts a large employer.

“Research has shown that most of the growth we’ve seen in income inequality in the last 40 years in America has occurred between, not within, firms,” says Jon Thompson, an assistant professor of economics at Willamette University in Oregon.

The study touched on how 2020 was a peculiar year when it came to job growth and the workforce as several industries and businesses were heavily impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.

“In 2020 and 2021, we saw several major metropolitan areas, such as New York City, Los Angeles, Las Vegas and Chicago, fall to the bottom. These are all major entertainment hubs, and the lockdowns and shuttering of hotels, restaurants, theaters and other related businesses likely play a role in their lower ranking. As a result, this may indicate a temporary shift as we recover from pandemic-related economic losses,” the analysis read.

To rank the best cities for jobs, MoneyGeek calculated three factors from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and Zillow representing how good a city is for someone seeking jobs.

  • The first factor is job growth and incorporates the trend in jobs created and the trend in wages.
  • The next consideration is job competition and includes the unemployment rate as well as the overall size of the employment numbers reflecting greater absolute availability of jobs.
  • The final factor is housing affordability, and it captures the ratio of wages over rents to indicate an area’s cost of living.

Only metropolitan statistical areas with labor forces larger than 500,000 were considered in building the ranking, MoneyGeek listed on the website.

To read the full study and analysis, click here.

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