Butte-Silver Bow in top of U.S. “micropolitan” economies

BUTTE-SILVER BOW, Mont. — Traditional small towns are fast becoming major players in the state’s economy, and city/county Butte-Silver Bow is in the top in the nation according to one economic research firm. According to data collected by Florid-based Policom Corp., the city and county of Butte-Silver Bow is eighth in the nation in economic strength. This is based on information collected from 536 such “micropolitan” areas — locations in the U.S. with populations between 10,000 and 50,000 residents.

Stability is the number one factor in Policom’s ranking, as Butte has continued an upward trend over the past 10 years, thanks to sustainability of its economy and consistency of investments in the town’s economy. The city/county has ranked higher on the scale each year with the exception of one since 2004.

In a statement to the Montanan Standard, Karen Byrnes, Butte-Silver Bow’s community development director, said the key factor in the area’s success is stability in wages, jobs and a slow but steady growth rather than a sudden boom of growth.

Policom analyzes 23 variables in determining a micropolitan area, including earnings, jobs, per capita personal income and overall wages as well as wages in specific sectors such as manufacturing and retail. A major factor is consistency in these statistics, and that is where the community shines, with a steady growth even during the burst of the housing bubble in 2008.

Source: Montana Standard




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Devon Green

Devon Green is an anthropologist by training and a lifelong lover of the written word. She became ​a ​reporter quite by accident when she started a blog documenting her day-to-day life in Macau and exploring Southeast Asia by bus, bike and the back of a motorbike. Upon r...