Byte of Prevention Blog

by Jay Reeves |

Charlotte and Raleigh Are Hot Spots for New Clients

North Carolina lawyers – especially those practicing in the Raleigh and Charlotte areas – could see a boom in new clients and prospects in the near future.

That’s because both locations are in the Top 10 for both population growth and employment growth, according to a new study.

To compile the rankings, a team of researchers analyzed “the economic performance of American’s 50 largest core or principal cities over the five-year period of 2012 to 2017.” What makes the study notable is its focus on cities instead of broader metropolitan areas.

“Looking at cities by themselves is important and useful,” writes Richard Florida, one of the study’s authors, in this article for CityLab. “While cities are parts—large parts—of metro regions, it is not necessarily the case that they closely follow the performance of their metros. Some cities may perform much better, others worse. This series dives into an aspect of contemporary urbanism that has been under-examined, the economic performance of America’s largest cities.”

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“Data show a sharp divergence between America’s fast- and slow-growing cities,” writes Florida. “The overall trend conforms to the popular image of a growing Sunbelt and declining Frost Belt of cold-weather cities. However, the most rapidly growing large cities are not sprawling, unregulated Sunbelt ones (such as Houston), but two relatively expensive tech hubs, anchored by leading research universities—Seattle and Austin. Denver, Washington, D.C., and Raleigh also make the top 10. Nashville, which ranks first among metros with 15.7 percent growth, scrapes only 24th on the cities list, with 6.9 percent growth. Dallas comes seventh for metros (11.3 percent growth), but 15th for cities (8.1 percent growth). Houston ranks eighth for metros but 23rd for cities; Las Vegas, tenth for metros and 16th for cities.”

Top 10 Fastest-Growing Cities

  • Seattle (14.2 percent growth from 2012 to 2017)
  • Austin (12.8 percent)
  • Fort Worth (12 percent)
  • Miami (12 percent)
  • Denver (11.1 percent)
  • Charlotte (10.8 percent)
  • Omaha (10.8 percent)
  • Mesa (9.8 percent)
  • Washington DC (9.7 percent)
  • Raleigh (9.7 percent)

Top 10 Slowest-Growing Cities

  • Detroit (-4.1 percent)
  • Baltimore (-1.6 percent)
  • Milwaukee (-0.6 percent)
  • Memphis (-0.4 percent)
  • Chicago (0.1 percent)
  • Long Beach (0.3 percent)
  • Albuquerque (0.6 percent)
  • Virginia Beach (0.8 percent)
  • Wichita (1.3 percent)
  • El Paso (1.6 percent)

“The picture changes somewhat for employment growth,” writes Florida. “The fastest-growing cities are growing 10 times faster than the slowest-growing ones.”

Top 10 Cities For Job Growth

  • Miami (24.1 percent)
  • Atlanta (21.6 percent)
  • Fort Worth (21.5 percent)
  • Denver (20.3 percent)
  • Mesa (20.3 percent)
  • Austin (20.2 percent)
  • Raleigh (19.6 percent)
  • Charlotte (19.5 percent)
  • Oakland (19.5 percent)
  • Nashville (19.2 percent)

Bottom 10 Cities For Job Growth

  • Tulsa (2.6 percent)
  • Memphis (2.9 percent)
  • Albuquerque (3.1 percent)
  • Wichita (3.2 percent)
  • Arlington (4.2 percent)
  • Indianapolis (5.6 percent)
  • Virginia Beach (5.9 percent)
  • Tucson (6.0 percent)
  • Milwaukee (6.1 percent)
  • Baltimore (7.5 percent)

“Seven cities rank among the top 10 on both population and job growth: Austin, Miami, Denver, Raleigh, Charlotte, Fort Worth, and Mesa,” Florida writes. “Of these, perhaps the biggest surprise is Miami, which comes first in employment and fourth in population growth. Austin is second in population, sixth in employment. Fort Worth is third in both categories. Conversely, six cities rank in the bottom groups for both: Milwaukee, Baltimore, Memphis, Albuquerque, Virginia Beach, and Wichita.”

Jay Reeves practiced law in North Carolina and South Carolina. Today he helps lawyers and firms succeed through marketing, work-life balance and reclaiming passion for what they do. He is available for consultations, retreats and presentations ( Contact or 919-619-2441 to learn how Jay can help your practice.

About the Author

Jay Reeves

Jay Reeves practiced law in North Carolina and South Carolina. He was Legal Editor at Lawyers Weekly and Risk Manager at Lawyers Mutual. He is the author of The Most Powerful Attorney in the World, a collection of short stories from a law life well-lived, which as the seasons pass becomes less about law and liability and more about loss, love, longing, laughter and life's lasting luminescence.

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