Despite a strong upswing in jobs, Tampa Bay is still among the most financially distressed major metros in the country.
The bay area ranks third most distressed — trailing only Orlando and Las Vegas — in an analysis being released today by credit counseling agency CredAbility.
There is reason for hope, however. As recently as last May, the bay area was in the top spot among distressed metros.
The rising tide of job creation, a higher savings rate and better household budgeting helped all but one of 75 metros tracked post improved scores this quarter. Buffalo, N.Y., was the lone exception.
This was the first time since 2008 that the average U.S. household has been out of financial distress for three consecutive quarters, CredAbility said.
"The average household appears to have turned the corner, managing credit wisely over the holidays and saving money over concerns that the federal government could have fallen over the fiscal cliff," said Mark Cole, the firm's executive vice president.
Jeff Harrington, Times staff writer