Posted Aug. 18, 2014 at 1:46 p.m.

Raleigh-Cary No. 2 on Forbes' best list for your professionals

Published: 2014-08-18 13:46:44
Updated: 2014-08-18 13:46:44

Forbes magazine's love affair with the Triangle continues.

This time the honor from Forbes is in its "America's Best Cities for Young Professionals" list, which focuses on the "best prospects for professionals aged 24 to 34 who hold a bachelor’s degree or higher."

Forbes ranks the Raleigh-Cary metro area as the second best city for young professionals for a second time. In a new report out Monday, the capital city metropolitan statistical area ranks behind Des Moines, Iowa, just as it did on the first list three years ago.

The ranking is the latest in a series of honors awarded to Raleigh and its environs by Forbes, such as No. 2 among America's Fastest Growing Cities earlier this year.

"Both cities are home to plenty of companies as well as a well-educated labor force: the greater Des Moines and West Des Moines metro boasts an impressive 1 large (500+ employee) company for every 612 people, and 41.7% of Raleigh’s population has at least a bachelor’s degree," Forbes reports.

"Not surprisingly, these cities also top our most recent list of Best Places for Business and Careers."

The magazine considered a variety of criteria for the latest ranking, including:

  • Local unemployment rates (projected 2014 annual)
  • 2014-2016 job growth projections
  • Number of small businesses less than 500 employees per capita
  • Number of large businesses per capita
  • Median salaries for 24- to 34-year-old employed college graduates, using data provided by
  • How far these salaries might go using Moody’s cost-of-living index.
  • Census data on the percentage of the population aged 25 and older with bachelor’s degrees or higher.

Notes Forbes: 

"Raleigh has been the recipient of many Forbes honors this year, including, the No. 2 slot on our list of America’s Fastest-Growing Cities in February. Its close proximity to the Research Triangle Park, where more than 170 companies—including IBM, GlaxoSmithKline, Syngenta, Credit Suisse, and Cisco—have outposts makes it a hotbed of job opportunities. The area is a natural greenhouse for the well-educated, thanks to the presence of North Carolina State University in Raleigh, Duke University in nearby Durham, and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill."

Raleigh-Cary by the numbers as reported at Forbes:

  • Population: 1,214,516
  • Median Salary: $56,500
  • Unemployment rate: 5.1%
  • Population with bachelor's degree: 41.7%
  • Cost of living index: 102.7
  • Avg. Yearly Job Growth (2014-2016): 3.7%
  • Companies with 500+ employees: 1 for every 792 people
  • Companies with <500 employees: 1 for every 51.85 people


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