Journal

Utah’s Economic Boom

One thing that is indisputable is that Utah’s economy is currently undergoing a large-scale expansion. The character of the state’s economy is rapidly changing for several reasons. The most prevalent reason for the expansion is a rapidly growing workforce that is becoming more educated. This growth has led to a burgeoning tech industry that is changing Utah. In addition, tourism to Utah is on the rise, further growing the economy. Finally, business-friendly laws and regulations have made Utah an ideal place to locate a company.

 

Technology Hub

 

Utah has become known as the “Silicon Slopes” for the technology scene that has spring up around Salt Lake City. The state is home to numerous large technology companies as well as many start-up businesses. Much of the technology industry in the state focuses on IT support. Utah has long had partnerships with the federal government that has boosted technology in the area. Now, there are 300,000 jobs that are either directly in technology or related to technology that are located in the state. While this may not seem like a large number, bear in mind that Utah’s total population is just over three million. This means that almost one in six jobs in the state is technology-related. Technology jobs tend to pay better than average so any position in the industry directly boosts the state’s economy. The sector continues to experience strong job growth that outpaces both other industries in the state and national job creation numbers.

 

Educated Workforce

 

Education has a high value in Utah and the state has a highly-skilled and trained workforce. In fact, the growth in both the number and the education level of workers have been the drivers of the growth in Utah. If anything, Utah has a shortage of educated workers for the job growth that it is experiencing. The state university system has been churning out many highly-trained graduates who choose to remain in the state after graduation to work. In addition, Utah has become a magnet for educated workers due to the prevalence of jobs and affordable property values. The state’s workforce is both young and technologically savvy, which helps draw new businesses to the state.

 

Business-Friendly Policies

 

The Utah government has enacted many policies that have helped drive the economic growth in the state. For example, the Governor of Utah has recommended a partnership with private industry to direct funds towards technology education in the state. Forbes has named Utah as the country’s best state for business in eight of the last nine years. This is in part to a business-friendly legal climate and favorable taxation rates for businesses. At the same time, environmental regulations do not act to strangle business growth and development. The state also has a reputation as being conducive to small business. Many businesses choose Utah solely for the reason of the economic policies of the state government.

 

Tourism

 

The tourism industry in the state draws many people to Utah for the first time. The state has many different draws that get people to come to Utah. These include skiing, national parks and sports. Utah is renowned for its slopes that pack visitors in during the winter. Further, there are five major national parks in the state that contribute to Utah’s economy by drawing visitors in the summer months. In 2016, tourists spent over $8 billion in the state, which supported 144,000 jobs. In addition, the city has professional sports teams the Utah Jazz and Real Salt Lake. The Utah Jazz are news in the city every basketball season as the franchise has a storied history that involves John Stockton and Karl Malone. Not only does tourism result in money that is spent in the state, but it also provides visitors with their first introduction to Utah. Many of those who move to the state first learned about the state during a visit for tourism.

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