BOSTON — American cities accounted for about 96 percent of the country’s job growth in 2017 as they added nearly 2 million new jobs, according to the latest annual report from a bipartisan coalition of mayors.
The U.S. Conference of Mayors, which is gathering in Boston starting on Friday, says in its latest “Metro Economies” report that 10 metropolitan areas alone generated $6.8 trillion in economic value in 2017, surpassing the output of most states. Those metro regions included New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Dallas, Washington, D.C., San Francisco, Houston, Philadelphia, Boston and Atlanta.
The mayors’ conference report also found that 86 percent of Americans live in metro areas and 88 percent of jobs are located in them.
More than 250 mayors are gathering in downtown Boston through Monday to focus on infrastructure, cybersecurity, school safety, immigration, automation and other issues impacting cities.
Sheryl Sandberg, chief operating officer of Facebook, is among those expected to address the conference. She will join Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner and Boston Mayor Marty Walsh on Friday for a discussion on how communities leverage technology.
The “Metro Economies” report, which was prepared for the mayor’s conference by Britain-based IHS Markit, also projected that economic growth will continue to be strongest in the American South and West in the coming years, since population and labor force growth is fastest in those regions.
But it also warned that the looming retirement of the baby-boom generation will likely slow economic expansion and increase the burden on federal programs such as Social Security and Medicare.
The report recommended policymakers focus on ways to expand the labor force, such as increasing the availability of workforce training programs for the chronically unemployed.
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