AUSTIN -- Austin's economy continues to thrive, said noted economist Ray Perryman.
In his 2013 economic forecast, Perryman said Austin and Texas continue to set the pace. Perryman sited a recent report which listed Austin as the fastest growing city in the nation, followed by Houston and Dallas.
Perryman said Austin remains strong in the technology sectors as well as health care, and is generating a lot of economic momentum with a housing market that is strengthening more quickly than the rest of the nation.
Perryman said because Austin is a great place to live, companies are eager to locate here because they won't have a hard time attracting a skilled workforce. He said it's all part of the reason unemployment levels here have come down significantly.
"At this point the unemployment level has come down a lot all over Texas," said Perryman. "You'll see that pattern continue for the next year or so here, and it will start to get back to what we're accustomed to seeing. We are certainly gaining jobs in this area at a faster rate than what people are coming in, faster than the workforce is growing. That's what you need to have happen in order to bring the unemployment rate down over time."
Perryman said Austin and Texas can't stand alone. He said fiscal concerns in this country as well as abroad can always have a significant impact on the local economies, and thus bear watching.