Longview is home to a multitude of companies that serve Longview, Gregg County and greater East Texas, as well as the entire central United States and international markets. We’ve known about our regional strengths for years and we have substantiated our claim… “Longview is a unique community with industry clusters ranging from Mining, Construction, Chemicals, Plastics and Oil/Gas to Automotive, HVAC, Metal Fabrication and Manufacturing.”
A look at employment by industry (Figure 32) illustrates the unique composition of the Gregg County economy relative to the regional, state, and national economies. Healthcare tops the list for all four geographies, accounting for roughly ten to 12 percent of total employment. However, this is where Gregg County’s employment patterns diverge. The next largest industries in terms of the county’s job base—mining (including oil & gas) and manufacturing—are part of the goods-producing sector. Each accounts for approximately 10 percent of the county’s total employment, well above employment levels in these key sectors at either the state or national level.
The county’s strengths in mining, construction, and manufacturing can also be seen in an analysis of location quotients (LQs) presented in Figure 33. These ratios show the concentration of employment in a given industry relative to the nation. LQs for industries that tend to be population-driven—for example, healthcare, retail, personal services, and local government—are at, or are approaching, the national average (1.00). This finding suggests these industries in Gregg County generally serve a local population. By contrast, those industries with a larger than expected concentration of employment (typically defined as having an LQ of 1.25 or greater) are assumed to serve a larger market.
Figure 34 drills down within a single industry sector – manufacturing – to illustrate regional strengths at the 3-digit NAICS industry level. This analysis points to employment concentrations for both Gregg County and the 12-county region in four industries: machinery, chemicals, fabricated metal products, and primary metals. Two additional industries (apparel manufacturing and plastics and rubber products manufacturing) have an above-average concentration of workers at the county level which is not seen at the regional level. Likewise, there are three industries that exhibit strong LQs at the regional level – petroleum and coal products, paper manufacturing, and wood products manufacturing – that are at the average (or below the) county level.
These strengths are evident in the region’s major employers which include energy companies, such as Halliburton Services; chemical products manufacturers, like Eastman Chemical; and telecommunications equipment manufacturer, General Dynamics SATCOM Technologies. A complete list of major employers is provided here major employers.