- America’s big cities are one of the main engines of the country’s economy.
- We ranked the 30 biggest metro areas on five measures of economic health.
- The cities at the top of the list have thriving technology sectors. San Francisco took the top spot.
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America’s big cities have an outsized role in the country’s economic engine, and these cities in particular are thriving.
Business Insider looked at five measures of labor market and overall economic health for the 30 metropolitan areas with the largest populations: the unemployment rate, job-growth rate, per capita GDP, GDP growth, and average weekly wages. We combined those measures together to get an overall sense of economic health in the metro areas.
The top three cities on our ranking — Seattle, Austin, and San Francisco — all have thriving technology sectors, along with strong economies overall.
Here are the 15 big metro area economies with the strongest economies, ranked from worst to best:
15. Atlanta, Georgia: The unemployment rate of 3.3% was just above the average rate among the 30 biggest metro areas of 3.2%, and the GDP growth rate of 2.9% was slightly higher than the average rate of 2.7%.
14. Houston, Texas: The job growth rate of 2.6% and average weekly wage of $1,318 were both the seventh highest among the 30 biggest metro areas, while the GDP growth rate of 0% was the lowest.
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13. Charlotte, North Carolina: The unemployment rate of 3.7% was tied for fourth worst among the big cities, while the GDP growth rate of 3.5% was the seventh best.
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