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Glenn Hegar
Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts
Glenn Hegar
Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts
Glenn Hegar
Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts

economy

This analysis predates the COVID-19 crisis and the economic impacts that followed. It is offered as an overview of the Central Texas regional economy and a resource for comparative purposes.

Regional Snapshot

Central Texas Region


The 20-county Central Texas region covers about 17,400 square miles in the heart of Texas, stretching from Hillsboro on the north to Interstate 45 on the east to East Yegua Creek on the south to the confluence of the San Saba and Colorado rivers.

The region includes three metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs): the College Station-Bryan MSA, comprising Brazos, Burleson and Robertson counties; the Waco MSA, comprising Falls and McLennan counties; and the Killeen-Temple MSA, comprising Bell, Coryell and Lampasas counties.

Central Texas Region Counties:

  • Bell
  • Bosque
  • Brazos
  • Burleson
  • Coryell
  • Falls
  • Freestone
  • Grimes
  • Hamilton
  • Hill
  • Lampasas
  • Leon
  • Limestone
  • Madison
  • McLennan
  • Milam
  • Mills
  • Robertson
  • San Saba
  • Washington

Top 10 Industries by Location Quotient

  1. Lessors of Nonfinancial Intangible Assets (except Copyrighted Works)
  2. Animal Production and Aquaculture
  3. Support Activities for Mining
  4. Pipeline Transportation
  5. Heavy and Civil Engineering Construction
  6. Mining (except Oil and Gas)
  7. Educational Services
  8. Furniture and Related Product Manufacturing
  9. Paper Manufacturing
  10. Justice, Public Order and Safety Activities

Source: JobsEQ®

Population Growth

CENTRAL TEXAS REGION VS. TEXAS AND U.S., 2010-2019

Region
10.7%

U.S.
6.3%

Texas
15.3%

Source: U.S. Census Bureau

In 2019, the Central Texas region’s estimated total population was 1.2 million or about 4.3 percent of the state’s total population. That marked an increase of 10.7 percent (about 120,000 people) since the 2010 Census.

Education

Average Annual Earnings by Educational Attainment, Central Texas Region

Average Annual Earnings by Educational Attainment, Central Texas Region
Educational Attainment Number Employed, Region Average Annual Earnings, Region
Less than high school 66,723 $37,202
High school or equivalent, no college 104,529 $41,848
Some college or associate degree 117,903 $45,621
Bachelor's degree or advanced degree 79,996 $61,237

Sources: U.S. Census Bureau and JobsEQ

In 2019, the Central Texas region’s estimated total population was 1.2 million or about 4.3 percent of the state’s total population. That marked an increase of 10.7 percent (about 120,000 people) since the 2010 Census.

JOBS & WAGES

From 2009 to 2019, the Central Texas region’s employment rose by 12 percent, much lower than the state’s total job growth rate. In 2019, the region accounted for 3.9 percent of the state’s total employment.

The Central Texas region’s most significant occupations are shown below, sorted by numerical growth during the last five years.

Employment Growth, Central Texas Region vs. Texas and U.S., 2009-2019


Note: Figures include private and public sector employees with the exception of active-duty military personnel, railroad employees, religious institution employees and the self-employed.

Sources: JobsEQ and U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Top Occupations in the Central Texas Region by Numeric Growth, 2014-2019

Top Occupations in the Central Texas Region by Numeric Growth, 2014 to 2019
Occupation Number Employed Average Annual Wages
Food and Beverage Serving Workers 28,795 $20,500
Other Personal Care and Service Workers 12,763 $21,400
Retail Sales Workers 29,329 $24,200
Health Diagnosing and Treating Practitioners 18,358 $94,900
Building Cleaning and Pest Control Workers 12,059 $24,100

Note: Data are as of Q4 2019 except wage data, which are for covered employment in 2018.
Source: JobsEQ

Regional Economy

In 2019, taxable sales directly attributable to businesses in the region totaled $12.3 billion, contributing about 2.2 percent to the state’s overall taxable sales.

Regional Receipts Subject to Sales Tax

Central Texas Region, Taxable Sales, 2007-2019
Year Revenue Central Texas Region
2007 8.4 billion dollars
2008 8.9 billion dollars
2009 8.3 billion dollars
2010 8.5 billion dollars
2011 8.6 billion dollars
2012 9.3 billion dollars
2013 9.8 billion dollars
2014 10.5 billion dollars
2015 10.7 billion dollars
2016 11.1 billion dollars
2017 11.8 billion dollars
2018 12.2 billion dollars
2019 12.3 billion dollars

Note: Numbers shown are for reported revenue subject to sales tax and directly attributed to the region.
Source: Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts

Summary

The Central Texas region is a microcosm of the state — both urban and rural, with a vibrant and diverse economy. The region is unique in that it has three distinct economic centers: the Waco, Killeen-Temple and College Station-Bryan MSAs.

The U.S. Army’s Fort Hood has a significant impact on the Central Texas region’s local economies. In addition, 2019 receipts subject to state sales tax indicated a continuation of the region’s slow and steady rise since the 2007-2009 recession. Many distinct industry subsectors are represented in the region’s most highly concentrated industries, attesting to its diverse economy.

The Central Texas Region is one of the Comptroller’s 12 economic regions.

View a complete list of these regions, plus more in-depth county-by-county data.

Glenn Hegar

Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts


Questions?

If you have any questions or concerns regarding the material on this page, please contact the Comptroller’s Data Analysis and Transparency Division.

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