By Chris Owen, Director, Florida Research
The Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) ranks high in Area Development’s “2019 Leading Metro Locations” report, released the first week of 2020.
Orlando is one of the leading bright spots in the longest economic expansion in U.S. history. What stands out in Central Florida is the region’s relatively young, educated workforce and diversified economy that has grown beyond its traditional tourist base.
Area Development studied the leading large, mid-size and small metros throughout the country and ranked them by several categories: Overall Rank, Economic Strength, Prime Workforces, Year-Over -Year Growth and Mid-term (5-Year) Growth.
Here’s where Orlando stands:
- The overall ranking has Orlando at #9 out of 399 metros studied and number #2 in the Southeast, behind Spartanburg, South Carolina, which is roughly 15% the size of Orlando.
- Compared to other large metros in the U.S. with a population over 500,000, the Orlando MSA is the only Southeast metro in the Top 10. Not even Tampa, Miami or Atlanta made the cut.
- Based on prime workforce indicators, which include migration of college-educated workers, percentage of population between 25 and 45, and increases in hourly earnings, the Orlando MSA ranks #1 in the Southeast and #8 for large metros across the U.S.