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SWFLEDA Sponsors Southwest Florida Economic Almanac

southwest florida economic almanac 2017In the beginning of February, Florida Gulf Coast University’s Regional Economic Research Institute (RERI) published the Southwest Florida Economic Almanac 2017; a 360 page review of Southwest Florida’s agriculture, community, education, government spending, demographics, health, and more.

The debut of the almanac is the first of its kind from RERI, who is known for its popular monthly publication, Regional Economic Indicators. Put together by student researchers under the guidance of FGCU faculty, it was sponsored by the Southwest Florida Economic Development Alliance.

“The RERI finances its day-to-day operations, including paying its students, through contracting for research projects and studies,” stated Director Dr. Chris Westley. “Therefore, we are grateful for the sponsorship of the Southwest Florida Economic Development Alliance for the inaugural volume of the Almanac.”

Highlights from the Southwest Florida Economic Almanac

The Almanac revealed a wealth of data from Southwest Florida’s five counties, which are made up of Lee, Collier, Hendry, Charlotte, and Glades. Of that data, there were several notable statistics, including:

  • The total market value of land and buildings in Southwest Florida has grown steadily since 1997, in spite of the economic turmoil in the 2000’s (Almanac, Page 10)
  • Charlotte County’s total market value has increased 170.9% in the last 15 years (Almanac, Page 10)
  • Hendry County held the largest average market value per farm in 2012, at $5 million (Almanac, Page 10)
  • The balance of men and women in Southwest Florida was fairly even in 2015, averaging 51% female and 49% male (Almanac, Page 62)
  • Two of Southwest Florida’s counties held percentages of Florida natives (citizens born within the state of Florida) higher than the state’s overall average: Hendry at 49.1% and Glades County at 45.4%  (Almanac, Page 82)
  • Three of the five Southwest Florida counties are mostly made up of citizens born in another state or country. Collier County averaged 22.6% of Florida natives, while Lee County averaged 26.7% and Charlotte County averaged 19.4% (Almanac, Page 82)
  • Southwest Florida is predominantly Republican at 44% of the voting population being part of the Republican party, while 27% are Democrat, 26% Unaffiliated, and 3% part of a third party (Almanac, Page 86)
  • 54% of Southwest Florida’s population resides within Lee County (Almanac, Page 90)
  • 77% of Southwest Florida Residents speak English as their primary language at home (Almanac, Page 92)
  • The leading employers in Southwest Florida are Lee Health, Lee County School District, Collier County Public Schools, NCH Hospitals, and Publix Super Markets (Almanac, Page 103)

Click here to discover more about Southwest Florida’s charitable giving, employment, finance, education, housing, income, and poverty statistics, among other interesting facts.

Discover Which Southwest Florida County Best Suits You and Your Business

Interested in moving your business headquarters to Southwest Florida? You aren’t alone. Various great incentives are leading many large companies to set roots in our region. Contact us today by calling 239-470-5499 to see how the Southwest Florida Economic Development Alliance can help you grow your business here in our region.

Source: SWFL Almanac 2017, Pages 1, 10, 62, 82, 86, 92,  and 103