Seattle Jumps in Standings Among Top-Performing U.S. Cities of 2012

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Zillow

Posted on May 13, 2013 at 12:00 PM

Updated Monday, May 13 at 12:00 PM

The metro Seattle area jumped to No. 13 on a list of America’s top-performing cities of 2012, according to a new survey that looked at where jobs are created and sustained.

According to the Milken Institute, the Seattle-Bellevue-Everett area was No. 27 in 2011, but was kicked way up the food chain of top-performing metro regions in large part due to resurgent tech companies.

“The Seattle-Bellevue-Everett metro area jumped 14 positions to land 13th on this year’s rankings. Its progress was largely fueled by a sharp recovery in the tech sector. The area’s high-tech output growth beat the national average by nearly 2.5 percentage points, 16th-fastest among all metros,’’ Milken reported, adding:

“With Boeing and Microsoft in the lead, business and professional services, along with transportation equipment (largely aerospace), have combined to create more than 22,000 jobs during the five years ending in 2011.”

At the top of best-performing cities list was No. 1 San Jose, which catapulted from No. 51 in 2011 to the top of the standings in 2012 courtesy of San Jose’s “unique industrial ecosystem that is susceptible to the same volatile forces, causing wide swings in performance, but which right now is on a roll."

Like Seattle, which benefitted from high-powered high-tech enterprises, Austin, Texas, and Raleigh, N.C. were boosted to No. 2 and No. 3, respectively on the list of top-performing cities.

At No. 4, however, the Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown metro region was boosted by the role played by energy-centric businesses. Milken Institute’s report noted that the Texas Gulf Coast city surged because of the way “energy played a role in the good fortunes of Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown.’’

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