2018 Standard of Living Index, Top 20 and Bottom 20

2018 Standard of Living Index

by Wendell Cox — The Center for Urban Opportunity (COU) has developed a measure (the "COU Standard of Living Index") that estimates the purchasing power of real average pay in metropolitan areas compared to that of the average employee who moves to a new residence.
Aerial view of Grand Rapids, Michigan

Highest 2016 Home Ownership Rate in Grand rapids, Los Angeles Last

by Wendell Cox — Home ownership is finally increasing in the United States, following the housing bust.
Interstate 110 in Lost Angeles

Employment Access in US Metropolitan Areas (2017)

by Wendell Cox — Economic growth of metropolitan areas is enhanced by employment access --- the greater the number of jobs that the average worker can reach in a particular time, the better the economic performance. Recent advances in data have made it possible to measure the effectiveness of access systems in metro areas.
Gavin Newsom at Web 2.0 Summit

California Needs a New Economic Model

by Joel Kotkin — California, epitomizes what economist Thomas Piketty has aptly called “the Brahmin left,” which trades in digits, images and financial transactions. This works well for the top earners, and their offspring, but most Californians are left out of the boom.
Occidental Oil Wells, Elk Hills CA

California Supports "Foreign" Big Oil

by Ronald Stein — California is home to the largest crude oil reserves in America, but its choice not to drill for that oil has in-state manufacturers “exporting” billions of dollars annually to foreign countries to import oil to meet energy demands.
London auction of Lehman BrothersJorge Royan

Ten years After Lehman Collapsed, We're Still Screwed

by Joel Kotkin and Wendell Cox — The collapse of Lehman Brothers 10 years ago today began the financial crisis that crippled and even killed for some the American dream as we had known it; middle-income homeowners did not see their wealth restored when the economy turned around.
The Big Promise of Our Midsize Metros

"Middle America" in America's Urban Century

by Jayson White — Many cities, most notably a dozen or two forgotten, flyover cities in middle America are reinvigorating and reinventing themselves in the blink of an eye. In what is sure to be America’s “urban century” this is one of the most important trends to never hit the headlines.
California Exodus

A Generation Plans an Exodus from California

by Joel Kotkin — California is the great role model for America, particularly if you read the Eastern press. Yet few boosters have yet to confront the fact that the state is continuing to hemorrhage people at a higher rate
Aerial view of suburbs

The Battle for Houston

by Joel Kotkin — America’s most opportunity-rich city faces a long-term challenge from “smart-growth” advocates pushing for more regulation.
Downtown Provo, Utah

Growth in America is Tilting Toward Smaller Cities

by Joel Kotkin and Michael Shires — We are often told that America’s future lies in our big cities; yet the strongest job creation and population growth is now occurring in smaller cities.