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Winners & Losers.

Retailers setting their sights on new store sites might want to gamble on Las Vegas and other Sun Belt and Far West cities, and avoid areas like Utica, N.Y. The Census Bureau released 1998 populations for metropolitan areas, showing population continues to grow in the Sun Belt and Far West, and decline in the hard-hit Rust Belt cities of the Northeast and Midwest. Below are the 10 metro areas with the largest percentage increases and decreases since 1990. (Complete listing: http://www.census.gov)

                       Largest percentage increases
                                       1998      1990    increase Change
Metropolitan area                       pop.      pop     1990-98 1990-98
Las Vegas, Nev.-Ariz.                1,321,546   852,646  468,900  55.0%
Laredo, Texas                          188,166   133,239   54,927  41.2
McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, Texas        522,204   383,545  138,659  36.2
Boise, Idaho                           395,953   295,851  100,102  33.8
Naples, Fla.                           199,436   152,099   47,337  31.1
Phoenix-Mesa, Ariz.                  2,931,004 2,238,498  692,506  30.9
Austin-San Marcos, Texas             1,105,909   846,227  259,682  30.7
Fayetteville-Springdale-Rogers, Ark.   272,616   210,908   61,708  29.3
Wilmington, N.C.                       218,248   171,269   46,979  27.4
Provo-Orem, Utah                       335,635   263,590   72,045  27.3
Source: IRI Shoppers Hotline Multi-Outlet Panel, a national sample of
55,000 households.
Purchase figures are averages.
                       Largest percentage decreases
                                   1998    1990   Decrease Change
Metropolitan area                  pop.     pop   1990-98  1990-98
Utica-Rome, N.Y.                  294,677 316,645  21,968   -6.9%
Binghamton, N.Y.                  249,022 264,497  15,475   -5.9
Steubenville, Ohio-Weirton, W.Va. 134,535 142,523   7,988   -5.6
Grand Forks, N.D.-Minn.            97,823 103,272   5,449   -5.3
Bangor, Maine                      87,001  91,629   4,628   -5.1
Pittsfield, Mass.                  84,208  88,695   4,487   -5.1
Jacksonville, N.C.                142,358 149,838   7,480   -5.0
Lewiston-Auburn, Maine             89,014  93,679   4,665   -5.0
Pine Bluff, Ark.                   81,556  85,487   3,931   -4.6
Wheeling, W. Va.                  152,903 159,301   6,398   -4.0
Source: U.S. Census Bureau, USA TODAY
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Author:Turcsik, Richard; Summerour, Jenny
Publication:Progressive Grocer
Article Type:Brief Article
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Feb 1, 2000
Words:353
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