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Salt Lake City — A recent report from the Milken Institute ranks Salt Lake City as No. 5 and Provo-Orem as No. 2 on its list of “Top 25 Best-Performing Large Cities.”
Rankings for the study were based on data from long- and short-term growth in jobs, wages, salaries and technology output. Provo-Orem moved up five spots from last year’s ranking. This is in part due to the growing technology sector and high job growth rate. The technology sector in this area is supported by companies including IM Flash, Ancestry.com and Adobe. Provo-Orem is one of three U.S. cities with Google Fiber.
During 2012, Salt Lake added 2,600 professional, scientific and technical services jobs, a gain of more than 7 percent from the previous year.
“Having two Utah cities recognized as ‘best performing’ in a study that takes into account the largest cities in the nation is a huge accomplishment,” said Spencer P. Eccles, executive director of the Governor’s Office of Economic Development.
The Milken institute rankings are reinforced by a study produced by researchers at Harvard University and the University of California at Berkeley. The study, The Equality of Opportunity Project, mapped the 10 best and 10 worst cities for economic mobility in the United States. According to researchers, Salt Lake City is the top city for economic mobility.
The Equality of Opportunity Project measured the chance that someone born into the bottom fifth of income earners could reach the top fifth over the course of his or her lifetime. According to the study, there is an 11.5 percent chance that a child born in the bottom economic quintile in Salt Lake City could end up in the top economic quintile in his or her life.
One consistency between the two studies is the top rankings for cities in Texas, California, Washington and Utah.