Why the traded sector matters

The traded sector includes industries and employers which produce goods and services that are consumed outside the region where they are made.1 The local sector, on the other hand, consists of industries and firms that produce goods and services that are consumed locally in the region where they were made.

Both sectors Ė traded and local Ė are essential to our economic health. Traded-sector employers export products or services, bring in new money into a region. In part, this money gets spent in the local economy, supporting jobs and incomes in the local sector. Local-sector employers provide necessary goods and services that both improve quality of life and contribute to the productivity and competitiveness of the traded sector.

Most forms of manufacturing, specialized design services, advertising and management, and technical consulting are classified as traded in this analysis. Retail trade, construction, healthcare, education, real estate and food services are found in all metropolitan areas and mostly fall into the local sector.

Figure 1 presents the share of major industry categories classified as traded in the U.S. overall and in the Portland-metro area.

1 In this report, traded- or local-sector industries are classified following the approach developed by economists J. Bradford Jensen and Lori Kletzer of Jensen and Kletzer (2006).