Austin continues to be one of the strongest job-creating metro areas in the U.S. The area added a net of 23,600 jobs in 2013, most of them coming from services producing sector. Austin is not only the home for many high-tech companies, but wages in the tech sector in Austin rank among the highest. We expect Austin to add thousands of additional jobs in 2014 mostly in the high-tech and services sectors. High-tech giants such as Google, AT&T, and Time Warner Cable are competing to provide superfast internet service in the area and networking is expected to start around mid-2014.
Austin’s unemployment rate declined to 4.9 percent in December matching its August 1989 rate. The unemployment rate is expected to fall continuously as the year progresses, powered by strong job growth. Year-over-year growth of personal income climbed to 4.7 percent in 2013Q3, which is about half a percent higher than the previous quarter.
After consecutive declines in total housing starts in 2013Q2 and Q3, Austin showed strong performance in housing starts in the last quarter of 2013. The improving trend in housing is expected to continue through 2014 as the area attracts more residents drawn by strong job growth and Austin’s favorable business investment climate. Currently, Austin house prices are at a record high. We expect housing equity to appreciate in 2014 with strong local demand.
Click here for the complete Austin MSA Regional Economic Update: Austin 2013Q4.