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June 2023 unemployment rate is lowest in more than 30 years for Montgomery County, Maryland

Montgomery County Seal with Background Image

Economic indicators for June 2023 show continued positive post-pandemic business trends

Montgomery County, Md., Aug. 9 2023 – The June 2023 preliminary unemployment rate in Montgomery County, Maryland was just reported the lowest *June rate in more than 30 years at 1.5%, according to the BLS State and Local Area Unemployment Statistics series. This key metric is the lowest of any June tracking to 1990.

The June unemployment rate was also lower than Maryland’s overall rate, which was 1.7%, compared to the Washington MSA at 2.5% and the national average at 3.8%.

In another positive economic trend, May Montgomery County employment in the Professional, Scientific and Technical Services subsector was robust, showing an increase of 2.9% year over year, which is well above the rate of the state and the Washington MSA.

The leisure and hospitality subsector continues to improve, increasing positions by 6% since last May and is now about evenly paced with 2019. Healthcare and social assistance jobs increased 5.5% year over year, ahead of Maryland, the Washington MSA and the nation.

“It is extremely gratifying to see these positive trends in our economy,” said Montgomery County Executive Marc Elrich. “These trends are a sign that businesses are coming back following the height of the COVID-19 pandemic. We are fortunate to have a diverse economy that is anchored by several federal agencies, a strong biotech industry as well as travel and tourism. We collectively support our businesses to build a stronger economy as we continue post-pandemic recovery efforts.”

“The growth in Montgomery County, with unemployment at a record low 1.5%, shows the strength and resilience of our business community,” said MCEDC President & CEO Bill Tompkins.” It is also exciting to see the substantial growth in professional, scientific and technical services, areas where Montgomery County continues to shine.”

*All figures, including U.S., are non-seasonal.

Watch County Executive Marc Elrich’s press conference here.

See the economic indicators infographic here.


About Montgomery County Economic Development Corporation (MCEDC)

The Montgomery County Economic Development Corporation (MCEDC) is the official public-private economic development organization representing Montgomery County, Maryland. Created in 2016, MCEDC is led by a Board of Directors of business executives. Its mission is to help businesses start, grow and relocate in Montgomery County by helping them gain access to top talent, business and market intelligence and prime locations. For more information, visit https://thinkmoco.com/

Link to press release: https://thinkmoco.com/blog/montgomerycounty-june2023-unemployment

Life science talent continues to thrive in the Washington D.C./Baltimore area according to 2023 CBRE report

Lab worker writing on test tube

The greater Washington region ranked 3rd among 25 U.S. metros for life science talent in 2023

According to the 2023 U.S. Life Sciences Research Talent report from CBRE, a leading commercial real estate company, the Washington D.C./Baltimore area has been ranked among the top three regions for life science talent. Out of the twenty-five markets reviewed across the nation, the greater Washington region secured the 3rd position this year. The first and second spots were taken by the Boston/Cambridge and San Francisco Bay Area, respectively.

In the previous year (2022), the Washington D.C. metro area was ranked 2nd among the top U.S. metros for life science research talent. The report highlights that while New York/New Jersey, the most populous metro in the country, houses the majority of life science researchers, the Boston/Cambridge, San Francisco Bay Area, and Washington D.C./Baltimore regions each have less than half of New York/New Jersey’s population but a comparable number of life science researchers. This suggests a higher concentration of life science researchers per capita in these metros due to the intensity of life science research activity.

CBRE’s report also reveals that the greater Washington area has a significant number of graduates specializing in biotechnology. Additionally, it points out that markets producing a large number of specialized biological and biomedical sciences research talent generally receive substantial funding from the National Institutes of Health.

The U.S. Life Sciences Research Talent report provides a comprehensive analysis of various data, including the total number and per-capita concentration of researchers and annual college graduates with life sciences-related degrees in each market. To access the full report, visit https://www.cbre.com/insights/books/us-life-sciences-research-talent-2023

Greater Washington life science cluster ranked second nationwide in CBRE report

The D.C. area earned its position near the top due to its large metropolitan area with more universities and industry players

Article originally published by Washington Business Journal on July 14, 2022

Greater Washington’s life sciences cluster just got the silver medal for talent, beating out other major hubs, including one of its biggest rivals, in a moment of critical growth for the local industry.

The D.C. metro ranks second only to the Boston-Cambridge region, notably edging out the San Francisco Bay Area, in a new report from commercial real estate services firm CBRE examining the state of the life sciences workforce across the country. It’s a key boost for this region, which has aimed for decades to become a premier destination for the rapidly growing life sciences sector, particularly during the pandemic, and its highly educated, highly paid jobs.

The ranking of the top 25 life sciences research talent clusters in the first quarter pegs the Bay Area at No. 3, New York-New Jersey at No. 4 and San Diego at No. 5.

The D.C. area earned its position near the top because it’s a larger metropolitan area with more universities and industry players, giving it an “abundant talent pool for life sciences companies,” the report said. That was also the case for markets such as Los Angeles (No. 7), Philadelphia (No. 8) and Chicago (No. 10). The bottom of the top 25 includes Portland, Oregon; Miami; Nashville, Tennessee; Albany, New York; and Pittsburgh.

The study also found that the life sciences ecosystems “more broadly thrive” in regions that house more people who hold doctorate degrees. To that end, Greater Washington has an advantage as the search for talent becomes tougher in life sciences, which in April claimed the second-lowest unemployment rate at 0.6%, according to CBRE’s report. At the same time, the D.C. region may also be seen by competing markets as a recruitment source, given its higher cost of living.

The region’s labor force counts more than 5.1 million people, of which 15.4% work in professional, scientific and technical services, and 12.2% hold roles in health care services, according to CBRE data.

The D.C. area’s life sciences community has seen substantial growth and attention through the pandemic as local companies jumped into the health crisis response. The pandemic generally boosted funding and support for manufacturing, research and development for vaccines, therapies and testing. And that directly benefited multiple resident companies working in and around Covid-19.

But the CBRE report also notes that people moving from major cities to some smaller pockets of the U.S. during the pandemic in 2020 “may have disproportionately, and temporarily, dampened the growth of such key markets,” including the Washington-Baltimore corridor.

Still, we’ve seen relentless activity from the region’s companies, particularly in Montgomery County’s talent-rich and saturated Interstate 270 corridor. Gaithersburg’s Novavax Inc. (NASDAQ: NVAX) led the pack as a vital player in the global effort to bring a Covid vaccine to market — and, after a long road, received emergency use authorization for the product Wednesday, making it the fourth to do so in the U.S.

The D.C. area has also attracted more biotech and life sciences firms to put down roots, with the National Institutes of Health and the Food and Drug Administration as obvious baked-in draws to the nation’s capital. The local contingent of companies continues to see approvals, funding, sales and public debuts. Lab space has also become a more reliable niche of the region’s otherwise uncertain real estate landscape.

Those dynamics are important, according to the report, which said the availability of venture or institutional capital “to fund growth is essential to a thriving life sciences ecosystem,” as is “the need for proper infrastructure for an ecosystem to grow, such as modern laboratory, incubator and manufacturing space.”

To narrow down the ranking, CBRE looked at the country’s 74 largest life sciences labor markets, considering occupational and educational data, as well as number and market density of relevant industry jobs, and concentration of doctorate degrees and professional, scientific and technical employment.

The analysis considered the jobs most relevant to the industry’s growth and people graduating with relevant degrees in those markets. And it weighed those scores against data from the normally dominant Boston, San Francisco and San Diego areas — which CBRE described as “premier life sciences hubs” that “likely reflect the most ideal elements for success as a life sciences cluster.”