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Living Standards across U.S. Metropolitan Statistical Areas

April 13, 2018

Presentation (pdf) | Press Release

St. Louis Fed President James Bullard drew on research from the St. Louis Fed and others to compare living standards across hundreds of metro areas in the U.S., just as living standards across countries have long been compared. He highlighted the importance of adjusting for price differences, particularly housing costs, when making such comparisons. In all, 381 MSAs in the U.S. were studied as well as just the 53 largest MSAs. “Among the top 10 large MSAs, only St. Louis and Nashville can simultaneously claim a higher-than-average standard of living, a lower-than-average cost of living and moderate income inequality,” Bullard said. He spoke at Washington University in St. Louis.

Related: Transcript of Audience Q&A, posted on Wall Street Journal Pro.

Similar remarks were delivered in St. Louis at the de Tocqueville Society, May 17, 2018, and at the Civic Progress meeting, May 21, 2018.