Research Briefing | Apr 12, 2023

Strong job growth set to continue over medium-term for Salt Lake City

With healthy in-migration and a burgeoning tech sector, Salt Lake City was one of the first metros to recover from the pandemic. Its job growth rate decelerated in 2022, however, and is expected to continue to do so over the next few years. Salt Lake City’s 2022 job growth rate of 4.2% trailed the US rate of 4.3% in 2022. Restaurants, construction, and management and technical consulting led job growth. We forecast a 2023 annual job growth rate of 1.6%, but Salt Lake City is forecast to see a job decline of 0.8% in the second half of 2023 before returning to an average pace of 0.8% in 2024 through 2027, above the US forecasted rate of 0.4%.

What you will learn:

  • Salt Lake City’s 2022 GDP growth rate of 3.3% ranks in the top 20 of the 50 largest metros. GDP growth was led by professional business services and information. We forecast annual GDP growth of 0.8% in 2023, but this includes a GDP decline of 0.8% in the second half of the year. We forecast 2024-2027 annual GDP growth of 1.9%, above the 50-city average rate of 1.7%.
  • Salt Lake City has attracted many tech entrepreneurs over the years eager to enjoy the metro’s outdoor amenities. Tech sector jobs grew 6.3% in 2022, but like many metros, it started to incur declines in this last quarter. We forecast a net loss of 900 jobs (-2.1%) through Q1 2024, but we also forecast average annual job growth of 1% from 2024 to 2027. Salt Lake City is home to a large finance and insurance industry including the headquarters of Zions Bank which avoided dire headlines during the banking crisis this past quarter.
  • Salt Lake City saw net in-migration of 10,800 in 2022 as population grew 1% for the year. We forecast net in-migration of 38,000 from 2023 to 2027 and annual population growth of 1.3%, above the forecasted US rate of 0.5%.
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