Tampa Wages, Personal Income, Cost of Living, and Baseball

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A few economic news and notes on the Tampa Bay area:

Tampa Bay’s personal income shows why jobs aren’t the answer to economic improvement – Tampa Bay Business Journal, 11/17/2016

A few weeks ago, the Tampa Bay Business Journal wrote about a very interesting fact about Tampa Bay area growth: although the amount of jobs are increasing, per capita personal income remains below average.

Job growth in the market was above the national average for 2015, but many of the jobs that are being added are lower-wage positions in retail, leisure and hospitality

That’s not a good thing, especially for sports teams looking for season ticket holders. Season tickets of course cost more than individual tickets. It is however, good news for cheaper alternatives such as Minor League Baseball or Arena League Football.

Florida wages still lag national average — but they are getting closer – Tampa Bay Times, 12/7/2016

The Tampa Bay Times recently took a deeper look into wages in Florida and in Tampa Bay.

Hillsborough’s wage is 4 percent behind the U.S. average, while Pinellas trails by 11.4 percent

Again, not a good thing for sports teams. Even if teams lower their prices in order to encourage more ticket sales, they will have less potential income from ticket sales. This puts Tampa Bay area teams at a disadvantage compared to teams in cities with higher average income.

Vinik: Tampa’s ‘most significant weakness’ is wages – Tampa Bay Business Journal, 11/9/2016

There is no doubt that sports teams are aware of the economic tea leaves in the Tampa Bay area. Last month, Lightning owner and huge Tampa Bay area advocate Jeff Vinik stated that better paying jobs and higher wages are essential for Tampa’s growth.

Vinik has also stated that Tampa Bay needs to keep baseball. He understands that higher wages are needed to support and grow not only sports, but all of Tampa Bay’s businesses. Unfortunately, the biggest industries in the area are military, real estate, and tourism – not particularly high paying professions.

Here’s how Tampa metro’s cost of living index is performing – Tampa Bay Business Journal, 11/11/2016

Although wages are lower, Tampa Bay residents can take a little bit of solace in know that it is slightly cheaper to live in the Tampa Bay area than it is to live in most US metro areas. According to the Tampa Bay Business Journal, the Tampa Bay cost of living index was a 92.2 in 2016, 7.8 points lower than average. Tampa Bay’s three-year average was slightly less at 91.9.

So people get paid less here and it costs less to live here. But people still think the sports market has room to grow.

Those people can’t support their argument.

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