Reports / Studies

Cost of Living - SW Michigan - 2017

Southwestern Michigan & Surrounding Areas - The Cost of Living Index (Q2 2017) for the Niles-Benton Harbor MSA increased 0.5% from the Q1 2017 Report, but it still ranked as the second-most affordable place to live out of eight regional metropolitan areas.

Economic Competitiveness Benchmarking Report - 2017

This report uses a series of common measures to determine the economic strength of states and regions.  The measures are divided into two categories: outputs and inputs.  Output indicators like jobs, income, population, and GDP show us the impact of policy decisions.  Input indicators measure the factors businesses look at when deciding where to locate.  Readers of this benchmarking report can see at a glance what progress has been made, where Michigan ranks relative to the rest of the U.S., and which direction we’re moving.

Economic Vitality Report - 2017

The Regional Economic Vitality Report provides information on key economic trends and performance within Berrien, Cass, and Van Buren Counties.  These metrics are intended to track progress in meeting important economic vitality outcomes.  The latest Tri-County statistics will be used when possible - however, the Niles-Benton Harbor Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) will be referenced when county level data is unavailable.  This report highlights the most recent data from the most relevant sources.

SBERP - Wages & Benefits Report - 2017

The South Bend - Elkhart Regional Partnership (SBERP) conducted this study of human resource practices, representing the self-reported descriptions of salaries, wages, and benefits from 168 manufacturing and non-manufacturing companies within St. Joseph, Elkhart, and Marshall counties in Indiana and Berrien and Cass counties in Michigan.

SW Michigan Compensation Survey - 2016

Southwest Michigan First, along with other regional economic development organizations, partnered with HRM Innovations to work with employers across seven counties of Southwest Michigan to gather pay data for this compensation survey.