Business & Economy
9:00 am
Mon July 30, 2012

Raleigh Metro Shines in Economic Recovery

The latest unemployment numbers released by the North Carolina Department of Commerce show an increase in most of the state's 100 counties. And when you cross county lines and combine cities into metro areas, the jobless rate still seems to be on the rise again. But there is one area of the state that continues to out-perform all others, the Raleigh - Cary metropolitan area.

Leoneda Inge: Numbers released Friday show the jobless rate in the Raleigh- Cary metropolitan statistical area sits at 8%, 8.2% if you include Durham. That may seem high, but metro areas that include Charlotte, Fayetteville and Greensboro are experiencing jobless rates of 10-percent and higher. Mekael Teshome is an Economist with The PNC Financial Services Group.

Mekael Teshome: The Triangle area is doing better than the state.

And Teshome says it's doing better than the nation, too.

Mekael Teshome: I think that in the area, we'll see most of the, if not all of the losses from the recession recouped by the end of the year in this area. In the U-S it won't be until 2014 when we're back to pre-recession levels.

Teshome says the Raleigh metropolitan area has an underlying strength to keep its economy stronger than most. Entrepreneurship. PNC statistics show the number of new businesses in Raleigh is up three-percent since 2008, when the country was in recession. New business growth nationwide, is up only 1-point-7-percent during the same period. Miles Wright is the CEO of Raleigh-based Xanofi. Xanofi produces nanofibers for applications in energy, medicine, and filtration systems. Wright says Xanofi spun-out of NC State in 2010,

Miles Wright: It's hard to imagine out first two years could have gone much better than it has.

Wright says they raised 1-point-2-million dollars in first round funding. They have 10 employees - and growing.

Miles Wright: We will have product on the shelves - granted they might be on the shelves of Beijing and not on the shelves in Raleigh. But, we're hoping to have products on the shelves by the end of 2012.

Teshome with PNC Financial says the unemployment rate might not be the best indicator to look at right now. He says the rate could remain high for a while as discouraged workers are encouraged and try to re-enter the workforce. Instead, Teshome says he's following the pace of new job growth.