Total employment: Total wage and salary jobs, seasonally adjusted. Source: Moody’s Analytics.
Unemployment rate: Percentage of the labor force that was unemployed in the last month of the quarter, seasonally adjusted. For metro areas in New England these data are not published according to the standard county-based definitions of metro areas; consequently there are discrepancies between the geographies for which the unemployment data are published and the geographies underlying the other indicators. Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Total output (gross product): Total value of goods and services produced in a metropolitan area. Commonly referred to as gross metropolitan product and analogous to GDP. Source: Moody's Analytics.
House prices: Prices of single-family properties whose mortgages have been purchased or securitized by Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac. Source: Federal Housing Finance Agency House Price Index.
Overall: An index of the four key indicators–employment, unemployment, output, and house prices–which averages standardized performance scores for a given time period (see below). We present each metro area's rank on this measure, except for the most recent quarter.
Recent industry changes: Percent change in total employment and total output by industry. Source: Moody's Analytics.
We present changes in the four key indicators discussed above over four different time periods:
Recession: Pre-recession peak to the trough of the recession (peaks and troughs are specific to each metro area and indicator). Measures the severity of the recession in each metro area.
Recovery: Trough to the most recent quarter. Measures the pace of the recovery.
Amount recovered: Pre-recession peak to the most recent quarter. Measures the extent to which a metro area has recovered. For example, a metro area that has fully recovered would have no change on this metric, indicating it is exactly where it was when it entered the recession.
Most recent quarter: Change from the previous quarter to the current quarter, measuring the current growth trajectory.
Notes: In order to define troughs in each metro area, we first define peaks. For each of the four key indicators, a peak is defined as the highest level attained between the first quarter of 2004 (or in the case of house prices, 2005) and the second quarter of 2009; in some metro areas where this peak occurred in the second quarter of 2009, the peak was defined as the highest level attained between 2004 (or 2005) and the most recent quarter of losses prior to the second quarter of 2009. A trough is then defined as the lowest level reached since a peak.
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