Market Fundamentals

Strategically located in the center of the Mid-Atlantic states, Allegheny County is a short flight or a day's drive from many of the world's busiest commercial centers, including New York, Philadelphia, Washington, D.C., Boston, Atlanta, Chicago, and Toronto, Canada. These lucrative markets encompass more than 50 percent of the populations of both the United States and Canada, and account for 53 percent of the American buying income.

Utilizing a transportation system that takes advantage of all modes of travel including highways, waterways, rail lines and one of the nation's most modern aviation facilities, Allegheny County is uniquely positioned to deliver its world class high-tech, bio-medical, manufacturing and communication products to markets throughout the world. Pittsburgh has progressed beyond an above-average recovery and on to establishing new economic benchmarks. Employment in the market area entered the fourth quarter of 2012 at an all-time high, and job growth is in fact growing more robust as both service and manufacturing sectors are now expanding. Recovery in both labor markets and housing markets put Pittsburgh in an enviable position moving forward. Not only is income flowing through the local economy once again, but wage earners are not generally still mired in the process of rebuilding wealth lost to the housing crisis. This combination sets the stage for steady economic growth to continue over the near-term horizon.

Pittsburgh’s cadre of large, highly regarded universities and hospitals support both healthy and stable income trends, and a steady employment base. As it is home to a large student population, Pittsburgh has a ready stream of skilled labor available as it continues to develop its technology, finance and research industry opportunities over time. Looking toward the longer term, the influence of Marcellus Shale natural gas drilling operations and ongoing expansion of high-tech employer Westinghouse provide the basis for Pittsburgh to reach a growth pace significantly greater than that seen over the past few decades. Already, demographic trends appear to be reversing from a steady net outflow of migrants. Highly affordable living costs add further weight to the idea that Pittsburgh may be just at the start of a stronger economic future.

Leading Economic Indicators

 

US national

Pittsburgh

 

2011

2012

2013F

2011

2012

2013F

Employment Growth (%change)

1.2

1.4

1.4

1.4

0.8

0.9

Unemployment Rate (%)

9.0

8.1

7.7

7.2

7.0

6.9

Personal Income Growth (% change)

5.1

3.5

3.9

5.6

4.0

3.7

Median Household Income ($k)

51.3

52.5

53.8

47.1

48.5

49.8

House Prices (% change)

-4.3

1.7

2.6

1.1

2.4

2.5

Single Family Permits (% change)

-7.9

22.3

11.5

-21.9

16.0

12.8

Multifamily Permits (% change)

55.8

30.6

15.7

19.8

58.7

1.9

Sources: Bureau of Census, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Bureaur of Economic Analysis, National Association of Realtors, National Association of Home Builders, FHFA, Moody’s Analytics, The PNC Financial Services Group

What Others Are Saying

“The 10 Best Places To Buy A Home Right Now” — Forbes.com
“Top 5 of “America’s Lowest-Risk Housing Markets” — SmartMoney.com

 

Breaking Pittsburgh News

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Pittsburgh, PA, 15209-2333