On July 30 USA Today published a list of the metro areas with the best employment growth between May 2014 and May 2019. The Bellingham metro area (Whatcom County) ranked 20th highest on the list, joining several other regional metro areas on the list.
Whatcom’s five-year growth rate is more than double the 7.3% national job growth. The article also noted that Whatcom’s population growth rate was 9.5% between 2013-2018, much higher than the 3.5% national growth rate over the same period.
The small metro areas on the list are finally seeing the percentage growth major metro areas like Seattle posted earlier in the decade, said Hart Hodges, director at Western Washington University’s Center for Economic Business Research.
“We’ve seen a bit of balancing out, so to speak, in the data in recent years,” Hodges said in an email to The Bellingham Herald.