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ABQ economy remains one of worst in nation

The Albuquerque metro area's economy improved slightly in 2017, but it remained one of the worst performing economies of any large metro area in the nation, according to the Milken Institute's annual report on local economies.

Albuquerque ranked 160 out of 200 metro areas in terms of being able to create and keep good jobs, Milken's study said. While that was an improvement from 2016's rank of 174, it was not good.

And, Albuquerque's economy was the worst of any metro area in the region. For instance, Austin placed 9th; Salt Lake City, 10th; Denver, 19th; and Las Vegas, 41st.

Milken ranks cities on several factors, including short-and-long-term job and wage growth, the number and concentration of high-tech industries, and high-tech GDP.

There were some bright spots for Albuquerque. The area ranked 34th and 54th high-tech concentration and the number of high-tech industries. But the area was lousy in other areas, like high-tech GDP, 186; long-term wage growth, 1896; and long-term job growth, 165.

Provo, Ut, had the best economy in 2017, followed by Raleigh, NC., Dallas, San Francisco, and Fort Collins, Co.

Here's what Milken said about it's metrics or ranking cities:

“Our index uses a fact-based set of metrics such as job creation, wage gains, and

technology developments to evaluate the relative growth of metropolitan areas. While national and international political and economic forces can affect near-term performance and can lie beyond a region’s control, the top-performing metros have cohesive strategies that allow them to leverage their assets more effectively. They offer important lessons that may be helpful to peer regions.”

Perhaps Albuquerque's business and political leaders should take note of the line about needing to have cohesive economic development strategies. Albuquerque doesn't have one.

Here's the rankings of metro areas in the region:

9. Austin

10. Salt Lake City

19. Denver

40. Phoenix

41. Las Vegas

90. Colorado Springs

96. El Paso

131. Oklahoma City

154. Tucson

160. Albuquerque

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