Detroit Regional Chamber’s State of the Region Report Marked by Growth


The Detroit Regional Chamber today released its State of the Region report during a luncheon event at Detroit’s Cobo Center.

“This past year was a year of tremendous growth. The renaissance of Detroit — and the region — is private sector led, technology focused, and sustainable,” says Sandy Baruah, president and CEO of the Detroit Regional Chamber. “For the fourth straight year, the Detroit region has outpaced the national average in private sector job growth. For the first time since before the recession, the region’s unemployment rate matched the nation’s unemployment rate.

“The region leads its peer regions in median home value growth between 2011-2016. Last year, the average median home value was up 6.4 percent and an impressive 36 percent from 2011.”

Through collaborations with Ann Arbor SPARK, Detroit Economic Growth Corp., Shiawassee Economic Development Group, and Macomb, Wayne, Oakland, St. Clair, and Monroe counties, the fourth edition of the report indicates the Detroit region’s standing among other metropolitan areas regarding per capita income growth, unemployment, home value growth, and other key economic indicators.

The report indicates that Detroit currently ranks fifth for real gross domestic product (GDP) along with Pittsburgh, and falls below the national growth rate. In 2016, the Detroit MSA reported real GDP of $223.8 billion, ranking 14th among the top 50 metropolitan cities.

The Detroit region also ranks fourth among peer regions for private sector job growth, gaining more than 200,000 private sector jobs since 2011, which slightly outpaced the national growth rate.

During the past 10 years, the Detroit region gained 1.1 percent in private sector jobs, ranking ninth among peer regions. The region is also home to 11 of the 17 Fortune 500 companies with headquarters located in the state of Michigan, with metro Detroit anchored by the healthcare, government, and manufacturing sectors. Penske Corp. and Rock Ventures currently lead as metro Detroit’s largest private companies, together generating more than $35 billion in annual revenue.

The report also highlighted the Detroit region’s income growth for 2016, which rose to $31,574. Continuing recent growth trends, Detroit’s growth rate since 2011 reached 20.6 percent, ranking second behind Seattle with 23.6 percent, while the national average for the same time was 16.5 percent.

The Detroit region also reported a civilian labor force of 2.5 million workers, but the area’s labor force participation rate of 62.4 percent ranked last among peer regions and below the national average of 63.1 percent, indicating room for improvement across the region.

Since 2010, the Detroit region has gained more than 218,000 jobs, but has not fully recovered all the jobs lost during the recession. In the Detroit region, which includes Ann Arbor, Monroe, Detroit, and Flint, the unemployment rate has decreased from 16.7 percent in 2009 to 4.6 percent this year, matching the national average.

Median home values also increased by 36 percent in the last five years, and nearly doubling the national growth rate. The 2016 median home value was $160,000 compared to $118,200 in 2011.

The report also found that business services-relate jobs accounted for nearly 8 percent of the jobs in the Detroit region, employing more than 233,700 people. Since 2011, business services-related jobs have added nearly 32,000 jobs and the industry is expected to add another 17,000 jobs by 2021.

A full version of the report can be found here.