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Brookings Mountain West

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As a group, the 10 major metro areas of the Mountain West outperformed the national economy during the third quarter of 2014 on all four indicators of economic vitality measured by the Mountain Monitor: employment growth, output growth, unemployment, and house prices. In the three months ending in September, the country’s large metropolitan areas were anticipating the rapid uptick in national economic growth that took hold at the end of 2014. Mountain region metro areas led the way.

All but two major metro areas in the region added jobs, and six did so at a faster rate than the country as a whole. As a result, employment across the 10 metro areas increased by 0.7 percent, compared to 0.5 percent nationwide. This marked a sharp and welcome acceleration in the rate of job creation for the region.

Denver enjoyed the fastest output growth in the country over the third quarter, and the value of all goods and services produced in the region’s metro areas all together increased by 1.1 percent—the second straight quarter of such strong growth. In a shift, Utah’s metro areas appear to be ceding their position as the fastest growers in the region.


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


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