During the Working Together Conference in Gillette, Sam Chapman, from the Kansas City Federal Reserve Bank shared a National & Regional Economic information validating many of the challenges Cheyenne and Laramie County are experiencing.
High compensation jobs are not growing at a rate to increase discretionary spending in local economies. In fact, Financial Services is one of the sectors increasing quantity of jobs and is also a sector that supplies a promising compensation, with only a growth of around 7%. Wyoming’s economy is most certainly recovering from the last economic downturn; however, we are faced with challenges related to the lower price of commodities because this is a prominent revenue generator with Wyoming’s production of coal. Energy has also played a vital role over the decades in paying higher wages, but with nominal job growth in this arena, wage distribution is a challenge.
The supply of housing is a National issue and is also a prominent issue in Laramie County, specifically Cheyenne. Standard inventory to be deemed as “healthy” in this market is 6 months. Currently, Cheyenne’s inventory levels are enough for only 1 month. We have a market full of “sellers” which may be a deterrent to those looking to sell their home to find another in the area.
Wyoming remains successful at employing those with up to an Associates Degree. Challenges in aligning compensation with education attainment remains a primary focus of Wyoming’s Chambers and this deficit was addressed during the presentation. The Greater Cheyenne Chamber of Commerce is piloting Talent Pipeline Management to address these workforce flows.
Rural communities in Wyoming, as well as around the Nation, are experiencing out-migration to urban areas. This is a result of relocation to Cheyenne, Wyoming. Much of this is primarily because of job availability.