CareerBuilder and Economic Modeling Specialists Release Top 10 Metros With the Highest Gains in Share of U.S. Jobs

In the years following the recession, a number of metros have become more competitive, capturing a larger share of the total jobs added in the U.S. because of factors that are unique to their local economies. CareerBuilder and Economic Modeling Specialists Intl. (EMSI) released new research that shows you which metros are getting a bigger piece of the pie and why.

Using a standard regional analysis called shift share, CareerBuilder and EMSI looked at the total job growth across industries for each of the 50 most populous U.S. metros from 2010 to 2013. Each metro’s actual job growth was then compared to what would have been expected for that metro based on national job growth trends during that same time period. The difference between the two measurements is the competitive effect, i.e., how much the metro is exceeding, matching or falling behind national job growth trends because of something unique to that metro’s regional economy.

For example, from 2010 to 2013, total U.S. employment grew 4 percent. It would be expected that Houston would add jobs at the same rate during this period (translating to 142,378 jobs with industry trends at the national level factored in), but Houston actually added a total of 250,607 jobs. While 142,378 of that total may be associated with national growth trends, the remaining 108,229 jobs is an indicator of regional market dynamics at play within this metro that are causing it to significantly outpace the national growth average.

The following are the top ten metros that grabbed a bigger share of job creation post-recession. While Houston most exceeded job growth expectations, Austin had the highest percentage of total employment (6 percent) that can be traced to regional competitiveness.

MSA Total Employment in 2013 No. of jobs actually added in the MSA from 2010 to 2013 No. of jobs expected to be added in the MSA from 2010 to 2013 based on national job growth No. of jobs added in the MSA that beat the expected job growth (competitive effect) Percentage of total employment due to the MSA’s competitive effect
1. Houston, TX 3,030,835 250,607 142,378 108,229 3.6%
2. Dallas, TX 3,370,536 221,161 130,742 90,419 2.7%
3. San Francisco, CA 2,336,223 165,768 80,549 85,219 3.6%
4. Los Angeles, CA 6,282,545 283,664 207,319 76,345 1.2%
5. Austin, TX 929,439 84,774 29,152 55,622 6.0%
6. Phoenix, AZ 1,956,524 124,501 70,263 54,238 2.8%
7. Miami, FL 2,540,304 134,588 83,934 50,654 2.0%
8. San Jose, CA 1,040,777 90,559 46,767 43,792 4.2%
9. Detroit, MI 1,932,779 125,330 89,148 36,182 1.9%
10. Riverside, CA 1,432,813 76,646 42,412 34,234 2.4%

“The metros producing the strongest competitive effect are often heavily dominated by specialized technical industries with well-established local supply chains,” said Matt Ferguson, CEO of CareerBuilder and co-author of The Talent Equation. “The overall job growth in these markets is not primarily a product of national economic trends, but rather distinct factors in the local economy such as energy resources in Houston, technology hubs in Silicon Valley and Austin, or the motion picture industry in Los Angeles. Thirty-two of the top 50 metros have outperformed national employment growth post-recession which, in turn, can have a positive influence on other geographies.”

Why are these ten metros performing better than others? The following industries that help drive their economies experienced notable increases in jobs post-recession:

  1. Houston oil and gas extraction, support activities for mining, architectural and engineering services, and education
  2. Dallas commercial banking, computer systems design, education, and general medical and surgical hospitals
  3. San Francisco computer systems design, Internet publishing and broadcasting and Web search portals, and management of companies
  4. Los Angeles motion picture and video industries, payroll services and accounting, agents and managers for artists, athletes, entertainers, etc., surgical and medical instrument manufacturing, and guided missile and space vehicle manufacturing
  5. Austin data processing and hosting, computer system design, management, scientific and technical consulting services, and semiconductor manufacturing
  6. Phoenix private colleges, universities and professional schools, commercial banking, professional employer organizations and semiconductor manufacturing
  7. Miami legal services, business support services, freight transportation, payroll services and activities related to real estate
  8. San Jose computer system design, computer manufacturing, semiconductor manufacturing and software publishing
  9. Detroit motor vehicle manufacturing, engineering services and temporary help services
  10. Riverside general warehousing and storage, offices of physicians, and heavy and civil engineering construction

While major metros such as New York, Chicago and Philadelphia all produced more than 100,000 new jobs since 2010, they also showed a negative competitive effect trailing national growth trends. New York lost more jobs than expected based on national trends in finance (e.g., securities brokerage), manufacturing (e.g., pharmaceutical manufacturing) and health care (e.g., nursing care facilities).

Chicago didn’t gain as many jobs as anticipated in manufacturing while government, hospitals and insurance carriers bled jobs. Meanwhile, Philadelphia was hurt by larger-than-anticipated losses in education (e.g., local government and private elementary and secondary schools), commercial banking and manufacturing.

The analysis uses EMSI’s extensive labor market database, which pulls from over 90 national and state employment resources and includes detailed information on employees and self-employed workers.

About EMSI
Economic Modeling Specialists Intl., a CareerBuilder company, turns labor market data into useful information that helps organizations understand the connection between economies, people, and work. Using sound economic principles and good data, EMSI builds user-friendly services that help educational institutions, workforce planners, and regional developers build a better workforce and improve the economic conditions in their regions. For more information, visit

About CareerBuilder
CareerBuilder is the global leader in human capital solutions, helping companies target and attract great talent. Its online career site,, is the largest in the United States with more than 24 million unique visitors and 1 million jobs. CareerBuilder works with the world’s top employers, providing everything from labor market intelligence to talent management software and other recruitment solutions. Owned by Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE:GCI), Tribune Company and The McClatchy Company (NYSE:MNI), CareerBuilder and its subsidiaries operate in the United States, Europe, South America, Canada and Asia. For more information, visit

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SOURCE CareerBuilder