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Will Your City Stay Strong in a Recession?

Just as some regions and states have seen more home foreclosures than others, a recession can affect local economies differently. BusinessWeek explored this idea, and found that the most resilient cities in a recession are those with high numbers of jobs in health care, education, and government. The cities they mention may ride things out more smoothly than others but they are not completely protected, because a recessive economy impacts most everyone. Many places in California are especially recession prone; how does your city fare?

  • Cities that benefit from government jobs: Arlington, Virginia; Washington, DC; Chesapeake, Virginia; Baton Rouge, Louisiana; Lincoln, Nebraska; Madison, Wisconsin.
  • Places with university presence: Madison, WI; Durham, North Carolina; Irvine, California; Baltimore, Maryland; Boston, Massachusetts; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Seattle, Washington.
  • Cities where many residents work in health care: Buffalo, New York; Durham, NC; Lubbock, Texas; Philadelphia, PA; Pittsburgh, PA.


tee0206 tee0206 9 years
Austin is definitely pretty strong. As the capital of Texas, we do have plenty of government jobs. The University of Texas, St. Edwards University, and a few other places are here. We also have two healthcare networks. The one I work for employs nearly 10,000 people in the area.
SDTransplant SDTransplant 9 years
I work at a Boston school and my job is very secure. But I've heard that some other schools have instituted hiring freezes and my b/f and I have been watching the real estate market and houses are being foreclosed left and right. It's sad.
geebers geebers 9 years
Hmm I work in health care in NYC (specifically in tobacco control and cessation) and there is a big fear that the governor will cut tobacco control in the health budget so I guess I don't know if my job is too secure right now. I have a year though so I am not TOO worried.
Spectra Spectra 9 years
Well, if things start to take a downslide here, we could move to Madison (right now, we live a couple hours north in Oshkosh). I used to live there and it's a nice city. Oshkosh is actually very stable right now, considering that there are a lot of jobs at Oshkosh Corp. working for the government sector and there are a LOT of healthcare job opportunities as well. Plus, the cost of living is very reasonable and a lot of people really like it here.
jesssa jesssa 9 years
the economy's a little different here in canada, but i'd say my job at the beer store would be pretty secure in a recession
itsamanda9 itsamanda9 9 years
soulight couldn't be more right. I just graduated from Pitt, and I'm having so much trouble finding work in the area because I'm not in healthcare, whereas some of my friends had jobs from UPMC within 2 weeks of graduation.
HeidiMD HeidiMD 9 years
I live in Seattle and I have a health care job with UW, so I feel pretty safe. My fiance is having a little trouble, but we're getting through it and it's not a big deal anyways. The uncertainty just sucks.
soulight soulight 9 years
I live in Pittsburgh and the joke here is either work for Pitt or UPMC which is an off shoot of Pitt (Universtiy of Pittsburgh), so I'm not surprised by this finding. I go to school at Pitt and will probably end up working for UPMC if I can't find a private company to hire me.
ilanac13 ilanac13 9 years
i have to agree that there's something to be said about government jobs. my brother used to work for the gov't and he was always telling me that there was a lot of security there since they were always hiring people to work on new contract jobs. i think that here in NYC - we see that there's a demand for health care workers but not so much for other things.
Shopaholichunny Shopaholichunny 9 years
I live near Gainesville, FL and I agree with Scissorz! :)
bluepuppybites bluepuppybites 9 years
Our small city of around 45,000, Grand Island, NE, is growing. Things have slowed a bit, but not to recession levels. My husband and I are taking advantages of this time, we've invested more money, we're buying a home, and a new car. We're such a better place right now, and we're not letting this stupid economic mess mess up our lives.
scissorz scissorz 9 years
i live in gainesville, florida home of the huge university of florida. i have to say that i have noticed that we have not seemed as prone to economic distress. there are definitely some vacant homes/condos but i don't think its all that bad here
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