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Sioux Falls Great for Young Professionals, Says Financial Survey; Young Professionals Not Following

The Governor’s Office of Economic Development last week touted another “Best Cities for Young Professionals” list from financial advisors SmartAsset, which ranks Sioux Falls as the best of 150 large U.S. cities for young professionals looking for favorable workforce conditions, cost of living, and entertainment.

But under that data lies the same contradiction we see when GOED cites all those business publications saying South Dakota is great for business but the Fortune 500 companies don’t move here: of the top 25 cities in SmartAsset’s 2021 roster of best cities for young professionals, Sioux Falls has the second-lowest percentage of residents age 25 to 34:

Stephanie Horan, "Best Cities for Young Professionals—2021 Edition," SmartAsset, 2021.05.18, retrieved and annotated by CAH 2021.06.02
Stephanie Horan, “Best Cities for Young Professionals—2021 Edition,” SmartAsset, 2021.05.18, retrieved and annotated by CAH 2021.06.02.

So, what? Having fewer young compatriots around to compete with for jobs and sidewalk café seats makes Sioux Falls a better place for young professionals?

The numbers don’t reflect the judgment of the market. GOED can wave this list and shout Open for Business™! and Freedom™! all it wants, but as a group, young professionals are evidently looking at different criteria, and Sioux Falls is having a harder time recruiting and retaining young workers than other metros atop this list like Minneapolis, Pittsburgh, Seattle, Austin, and San Francisco.

4 Comments

  1. grudznick 2021-06-02

    Look at that monthly rent! But why isn’t Rapid on the list?

  2. Mark Anderson 2021-06-02

    Sioux Falls is the best city for gerontophiles.

  3. Porter Lansing 2021-06-02

    There’s only two places I’d move to, if Colorado burned down.
    But, I’d probably stay in Colorado and rebuild.
    Austin and San Francisco.
    Seattle is close but too damp and humid.
    This list is lame.

  4. Arlo Blundt 2021-06-02

    well…Sioux Falls is interesting because it is still “becoming” the city it will be.It has had a long, long boom and is becoming “Metro diverse”. Soon, it will be very unlike the rest of South Dakota in demographics and economy. Its’s likely it will become much more important politically than the rest of the state and will stake out its own future separate from the influence of state government. State government will be an adjunct to Sioux Falls municipal government. Its happening now.

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