PHILADELPHIA, PA

Comparing urban areas across America, Philadelphia and Pittsburgh have struggled to recover since the pandemic, showing lackluster economic performance with job levels still below pre-pandemic times.

Philadelphia remains 2.5% below its number of jobs before the pandemic. Median multifamily rents are up 16.6% in Philadelphia. Job postings staying high while employment has dropped can reflect a lack of growth for a city, more retirements, or workers unable to return to the workforce due to family obligations or a lack of skills. The problem confronting Philadelphia is the problem confronting all of Pennsylvania’s cities: a shrinking state population and economic growth that lags behind other regions of America like the South and the West. The pandemic did not cause a drastic change in the economy so much as accelerated or enhanced existing problems. As The Center Square has previously reported, people and wealth continue to leave the commonwealth, city tax burdens can be high, and labor shortages have driven a sense of economic malaise. Rising housing costs also make it harder for young or less-wealthy people to find their footing in Pennsylvania.

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* Other structures include religious buildings, amusement, government communications, and public recreation projects.
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