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Brookings Mountain West

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The quarter’s Mountain Monitor finds that the rate of economic recovery in the major metropolitan areas of the Mountain West is no longer impervious to national trends.

The previous edition of the Mountain Monitor observed that the regional rate of recovery seemed to be converging toward that of the nation. This edition of the Mountain Monitor suggests that the trend has progressed further.

The rate of economic recovery broadly slowed across the region from the fourth quarter of 2013 to the first quarter of 2014, just as it did nationally. The national headlines in the first three months of the year were of contracting output and a flagging housing recovery. Both trends were observable across the Mountain West. Only four major metro areas in the region—Boise, Ogden, Phoenix, and Tucson—managed to eke out small output gains in the first quarter. Meanwhile, the region’s robust housing recovery slowed dramatically and in the cases of Colorado Springs, Denver, Ogden, and Provo reversed course. Only in Albuquerque and Tucson did house price increases accelerate.


Economic development; Housing; Housing--Prices; Metropolitan areas--Economic aspects; Recessions


Economics | Economic Theory | Growth and Development | Public Affairs, Public Policy and Public Administration | Real Estate | Work, Economy and Organizations