Charlotte, North Carolina
It was near Charlotte, in Cabarrus County, that a 12-year-old boy found a 17-pound yellow "rock" in 1799. Three years later, this was identified as a gold nugget, and thus the first documented gold find in the young United States. This discovery set off the country's first gold rush, with the small city of Charlotte right near the center, experiencing substantial growth as a result. The city saw another boom after the Civil War as a result of its newfound standing as a cotton processing center and a railway hub, and then yet another boom during and after World War I, when many soldiers and suppliers who had been stationed in the city chose to remain, thus expanding its economy and its stature. Later in the 20th century, Charlotte became a key player in the financial industry, with it presently being home to the head office of Bank of America and of Wells Fargo's East Coast Operations. It is the largest city in North Carolina, and is home to the NASCAR Hall of Fame.
- Number 5 on NerdWallet's 2014 list of "Best Cities for Job Seekers".
- Number 8 on newgeography's 2013 list of "Best Cities for Job Growth".
- Number 10 on CareerBliss' list of "10 Happiest Cities to Work in 2014".
Major Industries and Employers
The financial industry has a huge presence in Charlotte, with the city being home to Bank of America and to Wells Fargo's East Coast Operations. Energy is also a significant sector of the local economy. Additionally, the city continues its long-time standing as a transportation and trading hub, with a growing trucking and freight industry. Education and manufacturing are two other major industries in Charlotte. With approximately three quarters of all NASCAR race teams, drivers, and employees based nearby, Charlotte is at the center of the US motorsports industry. As a result, the city also boasts a substantial racing technology sector. The city is home to six Fortune 500 companies: financial giant Bank of America; Nucor Corporation, the largest steel producer in the US; Duke Energy, the country's largest electric power holding company; Goodrich Corporation, an aerospace manufacturing company; the automobile retailer Sonic Automative; and the multi-industry manufacturer SPX Corporation.
In 2012, it was estimated that there were 775,202 Charlotteans, of which 42,111 were veterans and 111,868 were born overseas. The population's median age is 33.4. Of those residents 25 years old and above, 88.0% have attained high school graduation and 39.4% have attained a bachelor's degree or more. This rate of high school graduation is somewhat ahead of the national rate (85.7%), and this rate of bachelor's degree attainment is well ahead of the national rate (28.5%). 16.0% of the population lives below the poverty line and 6.3% are unemployed. Charlotte's mean per capita yearly income is $31,653, and the homeownership rate is 57.6%.
Charlotte's unemployment rate and poverty rate are both quite similar to the national average. Its homeownership rate is somewhat below the national one, but its per capita yearly income is above that of the US as a whole. The city boasts a strong educational attainment rate, and a significant concentration of large corporations helps make Charlotte's economy a reliable one. This city is an excellent choice for job seekers, particularly those interested in motorsports or financial services.