Economic conditions in the Cleveland metro area have improved, say Cleveland Fed researchers
Payroll employment is up within the Cleveland metro area, particularly in construction and manufacturing. In the Bank's latest Cleveland Metro Mix, Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland researchers Joel Elvery and Julianne Dunn note the labor force grew year-over-year during the last five months of 2018 in the metro area.
The unemployment rate has been steady even as the size of the labor force grew in 2018, meaning that jobs are being created just as fast as people are entering the labor force. "The unemployment rates in the Cleveland metro area (5.1 percent) and Ohio (4.6 percent) were steady during the second half of 2018," write Elvery and Dunn. "Though these rates remained above the national average of 3.9 percent in December 2018, they are relatively low historically, and the stability indicates that labor markets remain healthy."
According to the researchers, the Cleveland metro area's real gross domestic product (GDP) per capita rose in 2017, growing 3.4 percent to $69,153. "This suggests that businesses in the metro area have become more productive because the economy is producing a lot more output with slightly fewer people," write Elvery and Dunn.
Examining the Cleveland metro housing market, Elvery and Dunn note that building permit issuance is down. However, home price growth remains strong and steady, and the housing market appears stable. On a year-over-year basis, home prices in the Cleveland metro area appreciated at a rate of 6.5 percent in December 2018. The median home value in the Cleveland metro area in December was just over $145,000 compared to the national median home value of just over $223,900.
For more of Elvery and Dunn's insights on economic conditions in the Cleveland area, see our latest Cleveland Metro Mix.
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