Feb 6, 2024 - News

Dallas named one of the 10 best economically performing cities

Illustration of a winner's medal shaped like a location pin.

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Dallas again landed at the top of nonprofit Milken Institute's annual list of the best economically performing cities, released first to Axios.

Why it matters: Dallas-Plano-Irving has "one of the most diverse economies in the country" with finance, information technology and transportation workforces, the report's authors wrote.

  • The metro remained in the Top 10 large cities for the third straight year because of its strong labor market and continued wage growth.

What they're saying: "What we mean by top-performing is that these are the cities that are growing the fastest," Maggie Switek, one of the authors, tells Axios.

  • "So if we think about New York or San Francisco, those are cities that have grown in the past and now are maintaining the status quo, whereas the cities that are performing at the top are really where jobs, wages and the high-tech sector are growing."

But, but, but: Dallas dropped to No. 8 this year, down from No. 6.

  • The rankings reflect the metro's struggles to maintain enough housing to keep up with its population growth.
  • It ranks last among top-tier cities in housing affordability.

How it works: The nonpartisan Milken Institute assessed 403 U.S. metropolitan areas using 12 economic metrics, based on data from January 2022 to August 2023.

  • The report split up rankings among large metros with more than 275,000 people and among smaller ones.

The intrigue: This year's list considered two new factors: income inequality and "resilience," defined as a city's ability to withstand severe weather and economic turmoil, writes Axios' Jennifer Kingson.

Zoom out: Austin, Raleigh, Boise, Salt Lake City, and Provo, Utah, top the list.

  • Nashville and Northwest Arkansas also rank above Dallas.

Zoom in: Dallas ranked high for rebounding after the pandemic and economic opportunities, but received low marks for income inequality and vulnerability to disasters.

Meanwhile: Fort Worth-Arlington ranked 32, up from 44 in last year's report.

  • The metro did well in job growth but, like Dallas, struggled with housing affordability.

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