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Low Wages, Business Costs Could be Helping Northeast Ohio's Economy

Jacob Duritsky

It costs less to do business in Northeast Ohio than most other places in the country. And the regional economic development organization, TeamNEO, says the lower wages, cheaper construction and property costs, and low-priced energy are helping create jobs here.  

The new TeamNEO report finds it costs a business about 10 percent less that the national average to operate here. Vice president of research, Jacob Duritsky, says industrial property cost 33 percent less, and hourly pay is lower.

Team NEO median-wage chart
Northeast Ohio's lower wages

“Median wages for Northeast Ohio were at about $19.55. That stretches across all occupations. That’s about 8 percent lower than U.S. median wages across the board. And certainly among the peer markets we ranked ourselves against, the lowest cost environment from a wage standpoint.”

Those markets include Columbus, Pittsburgh and Detroit. Duritsky says though Northeast Ohio’s employees are paid less, the low cost of living balances that out. He adds that the region generated more than 11,000 new jobs in the last year.