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Struggling Cities - 10/5/15

It’s been more than six years since the previous recession ended.  Despite that, some cities around the nation are still struggling to fully recover.  According to new research from personal finance website WalletHub, cities in the American Southwest have fallen furthest behind.  Researchers analyzed seventeen economic indicators, including changes in poverty, violent crime rates, home prices and wage growth. 

Of the fifteen cities that have recovered the least since the recession, nine are in the Southwest, including five in Arizona – Tucson, Glendale, Tempe, Mesa and Phoenix.  Four are in Nevada – Las Vegas, North Las Vegas, Henderson and Reno.  Reno has seen its output decline by ten percent, the most of any large city.  In North Las Vegas, home prices are down thirty six percent, second only to Detroit. 

As reported in the Wall Street Journal, among the ten cities that have rebounded the most, half are in energy rich states like Texas and Oklahoma.  Output in Lubbock, Texas is up nearly twenty eight percent since the end of the recession and population has expended by eleven percent while median household income is up twelve percent.  Moreover, the ratio of part time workers to full time workers has plunged.

Anirban Basu, Chariman Chief Executive Officer of Sage Policy Group (SPG), is one of the Mid-Atlantic region's leading economic consultants. Prior to founding SPG he was Chairman and CEO of Optimal Solutions Group, a company he co-founded and which continues to operate. Anirban has also served as Director of Applied Economics and Senior Economist for RESI, where he used his extensive knowledge of the Mid-Atlantic region to support numerous clients in their strategic decision-making processes. Clients have included the Maryland Department of Transportation, St. Paul Companies, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Players Committee and the Martin O'Malley mayoral campaign.