Two reports were released this week measuring growth in the Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood Metropolitan Statistical Area and painting a rosy picture for the area.
One report, issued by Connecticut company Pitney Bowes Software, focused on new households over the next five years. According to the report, the Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood MSA ranks third on a list of the nation’s fastest-growing areas. The report predicts the area will add 10,468 households over the next five years, which would represent 7.2 percent growth.
“Given recent population patterns, it is certainly reasonable to expect future growth at a substantial pace,” said Waco-based economist Ray Perryman. “However, the trend analysis that is used would not account for troop levels at Fort Hood that can have a material effect on the MSA.”
The numbers in the other report from the Bureau of Economic Analysis showed U.S. gross domestic product in the area increased 2.5 percent in 2010 after declining 2.5 percent in 2009. Although the Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood area only grew 0.6 percent between 2009 and 2010, the survey ranked it as the 129th largest MSA in the country. In 2010, the local area’s GDP reached more than $15 billion. Waco came in at just under $9 billion. The Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos GDP was at $82 billion in 2010, according to the report.
“The BEA data indicates that Killeen-Temple-Fort Hood was about average in terms of output growth among cities over this one-year period,” Perryman said. “It likely understates the strength of the area to some extent. Gross product is value-added, which is fairly low in the government sector, which is a major employer in the area.
“On the other hand, value-added in oil and gas is extremely high,” Perryman said. “Thus, this measure would tend to overstate the performance of energy-intensive areas relative to other measures and correspondingly understate those with a large government employment base.”