The West Today: What Sectors Drive the Economy?

In the West today, what economic sectors are driving the economy and make up the growing workforce?

It took a while, but the presidential roadshow has arrived out West. The Democrats recently held a debate in Nevada. Next week the Republicans will meet in Colorado.

In the West today, what sectors drive the economy? The four charts below review job growth and current employment Colorado and the West (eleven continental western states).

The results may be surprising. Both job growth and overall employment is driven by the services sectors (health care, finance, accommodation, etc.) rather than goods producing sectors (construction, mining, manufacturing).

See the charts below, the research tools in the right column, or links at the end of this blog. Given this information, what policies should presidential candidates advocate to help the region grow further?

Change in Employment, Colorado, 2005-2014

Graphic: Change in Employment, Colorado, 2005-2014

Employment by Industry, Percent of Total, Colorado, 2014

Graphic: Employment by Industry, Percent of Total, Colorado, 2014

Change in Employment, the West, 2005-2014

Graphic: Change in Employment, the West, 2005-2014

Employment by Industry, Percent of Total, West, 2014

Graphic: Employment by Industry, Percent of Total, West, 2014

Do Your Own Socioeconomic Research

See this blog comparing political rhetoric to West’s real economy.

To look at a state or county in more detail, see our West-Wide Economic Atlas.

For detailed analysis, the Economic Profile System provides socioeconomic data for communities, counties, states or aggregations.