Cleveland, Detroit Posting Fast Economic Rebounds

A new report from the Brookings Institution shows that greater Detroit and Cleveland are recovering faster from the recession than most U.S. cities.

According to the report, Cleveland ranked 10th among 50 metro areas for productivity increases and job growth and near the top third in 150 global metro regions.

“U.S. metros that suffered severe economic declines during the recession, such as Detroit and Cleveland, posted significant rebounds . . . even as metros such as Atlanta and Las Vegas await a stronger recovery,” the report states.

These areas, Minneapolis, and even the state of Ohio as a whole, are showing relatively rapid economic improvement, according to the report. The trend has also been borne out by additional research from the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia, according to the Plain Dealer.

I’m too tired to read this whole report right now, but on first blush this makes sense (although I still find myself surprised, in spite of myself). Manufacturing orders have been up for a while and were one of the first signs of economic turnaround. GM and Chrysler just announced they planning to bring 2,000 high-tech jobs to the Detroit region. It adds up that the areas that make things would recover faster than economies that were based on the-real-estate-smoke-and-mirrors game. Export goods are still the surest way to build wealth (outside of duping people with bogus financial products).

General Motors CEO Dan Akerson announcing new jobs for Detroit. Image via the Detroit News.

Before we get too excited though, let’s remember that Cleveland and Detroit were in pretty bad shape before all this happened and the recession hasn’t been easy on either of them.

Boy, if this is true, that would really blow Richard Florida’s whole “The Great Reset” theory out of the water.

Another random thought (sorry for the train of consciousness, it’s late), but this demonstrates how erratic and unpredictable the modern economy is. Who would have thought that Detroit was going to have a rapid turn-around 18 months ago? The entire country has spent the last 18 months writing it off for dead. This is why it’s a bad idea to dismiss certain cities as hopeless. If everyone was willing to do that, we’d all be chilling in Las Vegas right now consuming the last drops of water in underwater condos.

Maybe cities and regions are more resilient that we have been acknowledging.

Maybe trendy industries and cities are just that. Today’s auto manufacturing is tomorrow’s desert tract housing.

-A.S.

3 Comments

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3 responses to “Cleveland, Detroit Posting Fast Economic Rebounds

  1. Pete From Baltimore

    If this is true , then this is great news. I do wonder though about how much of the economic growth in the Cleveland and Detroit metro areas has occoured in the suburban parts of the metro areas.

    This still could be good news overall. But if the growth was vastly uneven, then you could have a situation where the suburbs grew econmicaly and the urban parts actually declined economically.

  2. n Parsons

    This looks interesting?????

  3. Meg from Vermont

    Did you hear/see the story about Motor City Denim on “The Story”?
    http://thestory.org/archive/the_story_1179_Joe_Faris_and_Mark_DAndreta_UW.mp3/view

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