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Home / Neighborhood / Los Angeles / LA area drops 54 spots on Best-Performing Cities Index

LA area drops 54 spots on Best-Performing Cities Index

by City News Service
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The Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale region dropped 54 places on the Milken Institute’s annual Best-Performing Cities Index that was released Tuesday, falling from No. 68 in the 2023 rankings to No. 122 in this year’s.

Meanwhile, the Anaheim-Santa Ana-Irvine area fell 22 spots to No. 78 on the Santa Monica-based think tank’s 2024 rankings list, which measures the economic vitality of 200 large metro areas and 203 small cities.

The L.A.-Long Beach-Glendale had been No. 87 in the 2022 rankings before climbing to No. 68 on the 2023 list. Anaheim-Santa Ana-Irvine was No. 56 in the 2023 rankings and No. 69 in 2022.

Austin, Texas was ranked as the best-performing large municipal area in the country on the 2024 list, while Idaho Falls, Idaho, was the best performing small city for the second consecutive year.

Among the criteria in the report are job creation, wage growth and the output of the high-tech sector, along with housing affordability, community resilience, broadband access and income inequality.

The data reviewed for the 2024 rankings were primarily from 2022, the report said.

“In 2022 (the main year covered in this report), the U.S. labor market added more than 6 million jobs, 90.7% of which were in metropolitan areas,” according to the report.

“Although metros continue to drive the nation’s growth, the geographic distribution of this growth has changed. Between 2019 and 2022, a few big metros (such as Los Angeles-Long Beach-Glendale and New York-Jersey City-White Plains) experienced a relative slowdown in job and wage growth accompanied by population loss, while economic and population growth took off in metros in Texas and neighboring states in the Sunbelt region.”

Maggie Switek, director of the Milken Institute’s research department, said in a statement, “The labor market displayed remarkable resilience in 2022.”

“By the end of the year, total U.S. employment exceeded its pre- pandemic level, though the national statistics mask important differences across metropolitan areas,” she added. “Many low-tier large and small cities continued to struggle, with employment numbers that remained below their 2019 levels. This signals that the pandemic has had long-lasting impacts on the economy of several metropolitan areas.”

No California cities placed in the top 25 in this year’s rankings. San Francisco was the highest-ranking California area on the large cities list, placing 27th, with San Diego 37th. The Riverside area placed 68th.

Thousand Oaks dropped from 79th place in the previous report to 135th place in current survey.

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