Samuel Stebbin, 24/7 Wall St. via The Center Square

Pick any two cities or towns in the United States, and each will be home to people who work in very similar fields. Certain occupations in areas like education, sanitation, law enforcement, health care, and retail are common across the country as they are practical necessities.

Still, the occupational makeup of different parts of the country varies in other important ways that are influenced by the regions’ history, geography, natural resources, local laws, and demographics. These factors can have considerable economic implications and lay the foundation of a given area’s industry composition.

In Montana, hospitals are the largest industry, accounting for 4.7% of the state’s total GDP of $52.9 billion. The industry’s annual economic output totals $2.5 billion, a 23.8% increase over the last five years.

Overall employment in the industry totals about 25,600, or 5.3% of all jobs in Montana. Among these workers, the average annual compensation is $65,511, compared to the average of $44,883 across all occupations in the state.

All data in this story on employment and output is from the Bureau of Economic Analysis and is for 2019, the most recent year for which data is available. Data on wages is from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. With only a few exceptions, the largest industry in each state is real estate. As a result, we did not include the real estate sector in our analysis. We also excluded all government sectors.


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