Montana Business & Employment Growth Since 2009

  • 7,588 more businesses
  • 43,351 more employees
  • 10.3% increase in total wages
  • $9,648 increase in annual wages per employee
  • 28.6% increase in wages per employee

Since 2009, the number of businesses in Montana has grown by 17.8% (6.4% greater than the national average of 11.4%). Employment in Montana has grown by 10.3% (3.3% less than the national average of 13.6%). Wages have grown by 28.7% since the end of the Great Recession. This wage growth is 3.0% greater than the national average of 25.7%.
The average weekly wage in Montana of $835 is 31.9% below the national average of $1,101. The gap between the national average has widened from 35.0% a widening of 3.1% since the end of the recession.

Sector Growth

Business Sector Growth

The Construction sector has the most businesses in the state of Montana. Since the end of the recession, the number of businesses has grown from 5,998 to 6,514, a gain of 8.6%. The table below illustrates the change in number of businesses in each sector.
Sector20182009Pct Chg
Construction6,5145,9988.6%
Professional services6,0654,40537.7%
Retail trade4,6744,718-0.9%
Other services4,2823,35927.5%
Healthcare4,0043,31120.9%
Accommodation and food services3,6483,24212.5%
Waste services3,0652,18440.3%
Wholesale trade2,7702,32519.1%
Finance and insurance2,2052,0388.2%
Real estate and rental2,0921,75119.5%
Manufacturing1,6341,35120.9%
Transport and warehousing1,5841,31320.6%
Arts and entertainment1,4231,24514.3%
Agriculture and forestry1,23798226.0%
Information8017408.2%
Educational services63341951.1%
Mining and oil extraction53442326.2%
Company management23013274.2%
Utilities220236-6.8%

The sector that has had the strongest growth [in number of businesses] is the Professional services sector, which has increased by 37.7% since 2009. The sector that has has the largest decline is the Retail trade sector, which has declined by 0.9% since the recession.

Employment Sector Growth

The Healthcare sector has the most employees in the state of Montana. Since the end of the recession, the number of employees has grown from 57,897 to 68,531, a gain of 18.4%. The table below illustrates the change in number of employees in each sector.
Sector20182009Pct Chg
Healthcare68,53157,89718.4%
Retail trade59,03055,5736.2%
Accommodation and food services53,96445,48618.6%
Construction29,07923,95821.4%
Professional services22,55218,52821.7%
Manufacturing20,56017,40218.1%
Other services18,24415,99614.1%
Waste services17,85518,469-3.3%
Wholesale trade17,17215,9707.5%
Finance and insurance15,25415,399-0.9%
Transport and warehousing12,34710,33019.5%
Arts and entertainment12,09911,3037.0%
Mining and oil extraction6,6616,5012.5%
Information6,3567,461-14.8%
Real estate and rental5,9925,41110.7%
Agriculture and forestry5,8444,23538.0%
Educational services5,0004,02524.2%
Utilities2,8223,055-7.6%
Company management2,0721,74518.7%

The sector that has had the strongest employment growth [in number of employees] is the Healthcare sector, which has increased by 18.4% since 2009. The sector that has has the largest employment decline in number of employees is the Information sector, which has declined by 14.8% since the recession.

Weekly Wage Growth By Sector

The Mining and oil extraction sector has the highest average weekly wage in the state of Montana. Since the end of the recession, the average wage has grown from $1,356 to $1,749, a gain of 29.0%. The table below illustrates the change in weekly wage in each sector.
Sector20182009Pct Chg
Mining and oil extraction$1,749$1,3560.0%
Utilities$1,689$1,4220.0%
Company management$1,508$1,0910.0%
Finance and insurance$1,304$9200.0%
Professional services$1,216$9300.0%
Wholesale trade$1,137$8590.0%
Information$1,047$7710.0%
Construction$1,019$7680.0%
Manufacturing$965$7930.0%
Healthcare$939$7140.0%
Transport and warehousing$852$6600.0%
Agriculture and forestry$767$5450.0%
Real estate and rental$720$4930.0%
Waste services$680$4940.0%
Other services$584$4470.0%
Educational services$578$4740.0%
Retail trade$576$4540.0%
Arts and entertainment$421$3260.0%
Accommodation and food services$357$2570.0%

The sector that has had the strongest wage growth is the Unclassified sector, which has increased by 0.0% since 2009. The sector that has has the smallest wage growth is the Arts and entertainment sector, which has declined by 0.0% since the recession.


Industry Growth

Business Industry Growth

The Restaurants and other eating places industry has the greatest number of businesses in the state of Montana. This industry currently has 2,133 businesses in it. There is no direct comparison to the total at the end of recession and is not included in the table below.

Industry20182009Pct Chg
Residential building construction1,8691,7540.0%
Computer systems design and related services1,1365770.0%
Management consulting services9504710.0%
Accounting and bookkeeping services8316450.0%
Offices of real estate agents and brokers8156550.0%
Private households7953570.0%

The top industry that has had the largest increase in the number of businesses is the Computer systems design and related services industry, which has increased by 0.0% since 2009. The top industry that has has the largest decline in the number of businesses is the Residential building construction industry, which has declined by 0.0% since the recession.

Employment Industry Growth

The Restaurants and other eating places industry has the greatest number of employees in the state of Montana. This industry currently has 35,127 employees in it. There is no direct comparison back to the total at the end of the recession and is not included in the table below.

Industry20182009Pct Chg
General medical and surgical hospitals23,89619,5120.0%
Hotels and motels except casino hotels11,8149,5190.0%
Supermarkets and other grocery stores9,8358,0690.0%
Offices of physicians6,6466,0850.0%
Gasoline stations with convenience stores5,4185,0540.0%

The top industry that has had the largest increase in the number of employees is the General medical and surgical hospitals industry, which has increased by 0.0% since 2009. The top industry that has has the largest decline in the number of employees is the Gasoline stations with convenience stores industry, which has declined by 0.0% since the recession.

Weekly Wage Growth By Industry

The Industrial paper merchant wholesalers industry has the highest average weekly wage in the state of Montana. Since the end of the recession, the average wage has grown from $1,227 to $4,723, a gain of 284.9%. The table below illustrates the change in weekly wage in each sector.
Industry20182009Pct Chg
Industrial paper merchant wholesalers$4,723$1,2270.0%
Investment banking and securities dealing$4,462$1,4340.0%
Securities brokerage$3,016$1,5720.0%
Computer and peripheral equipment mfg.$2,599$7510.0%
Petroleum refineries$2,537$1,8430.0%

The top industry that has had the strongest wage growth is the Industrial paper merchant wholesalers industry, which has increased by 0.0% since 2009. The top industry that has has the largest wage decline is the Petroleum refineries industry, which has declined by 0.0% since the recession.


Company Size

Business Growth By Company Size

The biggest percentage change in the number of businesses has been in businesses with 250 to 499 employees. The number of businesses with this number of employees has grown from 42 to 68, which is an increase of 61.9%.

The smallest percentage change in the number of businesses has been in businesses with 500 to 999 employees. The number of businesses with this number of employees has grown from 14 to 7, which is an increase of -50.0%.

Table: Change in the number of Businesses by Size of Business, since the Recession:

Company SizeQ1 2018Q1 2010% Change
Fewer than 5 Employees30,39825,35119.9%
5-9 Employees7,3466,8297.6%
10-19 Employees4,7204,18412.8%
20-49 Employees2,7872,30121.1%
50-99 Employees73564813.4%
100-249 Employees2872629.5%
250-499 Employees684261.9%
500-999 Employees714-50.0%
More Than 1,000 Employees770.0%


Employment Growth by Company Size

The biggest percentage change in the number of employees has been in businesses with 250 to 499 employees. The number of employees in companies this size has grown from 13,794 to 22,400, which is an increase of 62.4%.

Table: Change in the number of Employees by Size of Business, since the Recession:

Company SizeQ1 2018Q1 2010% Change
Fewer than 5 Employees43,68738,58613.2%
5-9 Employees47,88244,2968.1%
10-19 Employees62,74555,55412.9%
20-49 Employees81,40666,76921.9%
50-99 Employees49,37643,84312.6%
100-249 Employees40,48336,60910.6%
250-499 Employees22,40013,79462.4%
500-999 Employees09,683-100.0%
More Than 1,000 Employees012,759-100.0%


Weekly Wage Growth by Company Size

The biggest percentage change in the average weekly wage has been in businesses with fewer than 5 employees. The average weekly wage in companies this size has grown from $598 to $819, which is an increase of 37.0%.

Table: Change Average Weekly Wage by Size Since the Recession:

Company SizeQ1 2018Q1 2010% Change
Fewer than 5 Employees$819$59837.0%
5-9 Employees$679$52928.4%
10-19 Employees$711$55927.2%
20-49 Employees$708$56724.9%
50-99 Employees$752$61023.3%
100-249 Employees$881$66732.1%
250-499 Employees$1,157$89129.9%
500-999 Employees$0$666-100.0%
More Than 1,000 Employees$0$916-100.0%



Data Sources




About the Writer

This page was created and is maintained by Kurt Tietjen, Founder of Stavera, High Peak Media & HomeGearWorks.com. Kurt is an executive, data scientist and software engineer who holds an MBA in Management Information Systems. In 2010, he partnered with scientists at Northwestern University to launch The Street Wire. This was one of the first mainstream uses of what would become “Narrative Science”, an artificial intelligence platform specializing in natural language generation. You can contact Kurt on LinkedIn here.