Improving economic conditions are now apparent in virtually all parts of the nation. According to Moody’s Analytics, the general pattern of growth stills favors the South and the West, however. For instance, the West, which encompasses technology hotspots like San Jose and Seattle, is creating the largest share of high wage jobs, defined as those paying more than $80,000 a year.
Though the southern United States is adding jobs nearly as fast as the West, incomes there lag. That said, because many of the western states, including Nevada, Arizona and California suffered disproportionately during the recession, the west is still associated with the highest unemployment in the country, just short of 7 percent. Leading indicators suggest ongoing economic momentum. For instance, manufacturing activity is now expanding in much of the nations. All of the regional surveys of purchasing managers have been strong, including an expansion of new orders, manageable inventories and improved hiring intentions.
Surveys in California, New York, Philadelphia and Texas have been particularly strong. Hiring in the Northeast has also been picking up in professional and financial services.