23 Metropolitan Areas in the US Appear to be Pulling Out of Recession


The economy, which has been in an all-out nosedive since Obama was elected in November, may finally be nearing the bottom of the recession in 23 of the nation’s metro areas, according to the latest Adversity Index data on jobs, manufacturing and housing from Moody’s Economy.com.

Although no metro area in the country is actually "in recovery," 23 out of 381 are showing a "moderating" recession, meaning the economies in those areas are not contracting as severely as six months earlier.

  • California: Hanford-Corcoran
  • Colorado (2): Boulder, Denver-Aurora-Broomfield
  • Connecticut (2): Hartford-W Hartford-E Hartford, Norwich
  • Florida: Bradenton-Sarasota-Venice
  • Georgia: Savannah
  • Illinois and Wisconsin: Lake County, Ill.-Kenosha County, Wis.
  • Louisiana: Baton Rouge
  • Maine: Portland-S. Portland-Biddeford
  • Massachusetts (2): Cambridge-Newton-Framingham, Peabody
  • Mississippi: Pascagoula
  • Nevada: Carson City
  • Tennessee and Kentucky: Clarksville, Tenn.-Ky.
  • Utah: Provo-Orem

And, the big winner, which is once again showing resiliency…

  • Texas (7): Austin-Round Rock, Fort Worth-Arlington, Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown, McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, San Angelo, San Antonio, Wichita Falls 

Although these areas may be first to come in for a landing, that does not mean that they necessarily will be the first to take off again.


"I don’t think I would categorically say that these are the places pulling out of recession first, because it may not follow an even path toward recovery," said economist Andrew Gledhill of Moody’s Economy.com. "Many that fall into this category may end up staying at this level of ‘moderating recession’ for quite a while."

"Bradenton and Carson City stick out to me as places, while there may be evidence that the worst declines are in the past, there still remains a long road to recovery, considering the housing and credit problems," Gledhill said. "For some in this group, there will be an early recovery; those scattered across Texas appear to be good candidates."

Each month, Moody’s Economy.com uses data on employment, industrial production, housing starts and house prices to label each state or metro area as: expanding, at risk of recession, in recession or recovering.
Here are several ways to explore this month’s Adversity Index:

  • An interactive map on this page shows the economic health of every state and metro area. You can "play" the map to watch the progress of recessions over 15 years, or select any state to see data for each metro area for each month. You can also see the map on its own page.
  • A month-by-month chart shows when the current recession enveloped each metro area.
  • The updated index will be published every month at http://adversity.msnbc.com. There is a lag of nearly two months, so June data will be out in August.
  • An explainer tells how the Adversity Index assesses the economy.



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