The study from the D.C.-based think-tank and JPMorgan Chase measured the San Jose metropolitan region’s GDP per-capita in 2014 as $77,440, the third highest among 300 big metro areas worldwide. The San Francisco-Oakland metro area was $66,790, 12th highest. At the bottom of the list were Indian cities such as Kolkata, Bangalore and Hyderabad, all less than $1,500, despite the latter two having reputations as IT hubs.
Brookings defines per-capita GDP as “the size of an economy relative to population. It is not personal income or household income, and does not reflect the distribution of income, but proxies the average standard of living in an area.”
The bigger focus of the index was growth, in both jobs and per-capita GDP. Macau was just ahead of San Francisco at 11th in GDP per-capita, but the former Portuguese colony on China’s coast led the global list of fastest-growing metropolitan economies last year. The fastest-growing list was dominated by cities in China and Turkey. America’s best performer last year was Austin, Tex., at 38th on the growth list. California’s best economic performer last year was 49th-place Fresno, as the Fresno Bee was quick to note. San Jose was 72nd, and San Francisco-Oakland 125th.
The study also declared the San Jose metro (a region that encompasses Santa Clara County) as one of 32 of the 80 U.S. metros to have fully recovered from the recession. The San Francisco-Oakland metro was only partially recovered, the report said.