The economies of Michigan: Jackson

By the numbers

$5.6 billion

Size of local economy, 2013


Percent economic growth, 2012-2013.


Rank, among 14 metropolitan
regions in Michigan, in terms
of one-year growth


Rank, among 382 metropolitan
regions in country, in terms of one-year change in GDP


Rank, among 14 Michigan regions,
in overall economic size


Rank nationally, in terms of economic size.
(The region, comprised of Jackson County, has 160,000 people,
ranking 253rd in population.)

The Business Buzz

This region had the third-highest regional GDP annual growth in 2013. Its 4.1 percent rise in 2013 over 2012 was topped only by the Monroe and Nile-Benton Harbor regions and is one of five regions in the state to reach its pre-recession output of 2007.

Manufacturing, more than a fifth of total GDP, grew by 10 percent in 2013. Within that sector, primary metals manufacturing did well. The finance and insurance sector was up by nearly 14 percent and wholesale trade rose nearly 11 percent while the professional, scientific and technical services sector was up more than 10 percent.

But construction lost another 11.5 percent in 2013 and remains 58 percent below its peak year of 2001 and 25.6 percent below 2007.

The good news could have been even better, said the president and CEO of the Jackson County Chamber of Commerce.

“Our businesses would probably have experienced a higher growth rate if we didn't have a workforce shortage,” Mindy Bradish-Orta said. “I hear daily of businesses turning down sales because they don't have the capacity to fill the order. The manufacturers that diversified during the downturn seem to be sustaining at a good level and those that stayed auto-related are experiencing a significant increase in sales.”

Top 10 industries: Broad gains boost Jackson

Though the region’s healthy 2013 gains can be attributed to a boost in manufacturing, it’s seen most of its largest sectors rise as well.

Sector 2013 GDP
(in $ millions)
Percent of economy Peak year Change (2013)
from peak
Change from 2007 Change from 2012
Manufacturing $1,173 21.1% 2013 0% 10.4% 8.9%
Government $635 11.4% 2001 -27.4% -13.5% -2.8%
Educational services, health care, and social assistance $609 10.9% 2008 -1.7% 3.9% 2%
Finance, insurance, real estate, rental, and leasing $498 8.9% 2003 -20% -1.7% 9.6%
Retail trade $396 7.1% 2002 -20.8% 3.2% 4.8%
Professional and business services $370 6.6% 2012 -2% 18.1% -2%
Wholesale trade $295 5.3% 2007 -2.9% -3% 10.8%
Arts, entertainment, recreation, accommodation, and food services $144 2.6% 2003 -17.5% -14.6% 1.5%
Other services, except government $136 2.4% 2001 -36.3% -28.5% -6.1%
Construction $122 2.2% 2001 -58% -34.5% -11.5%

Although it's not an "industry" by federal definition, government services were included in the list.

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