San Antonio’s economy is anchored by three major industries: healthcare, tourism and national defense. Despite the importance of these sectors, San Antonio continues to make great strides in diversifying its economic base, resulting in one of the nation's most abbreviated down cycles during the last recession. Oil and gas extraction from Eagle Ford Shale will likely be a boon to the Southwest Texas economy in the years ahead. The energy sector is becoming more prominent with expansions at NuStar Energy and Tesoro. San Antonio is the clear leader in Texas when it comes to benefiting from military spending, as Fort Sam Houston, Lackland Air Force Base, Randolph Air Force Base, Camp Bullis are among those located in the metro.
Education and healthcare play vital roles in the local economy. An important component of the healthcare industry is South Texas Medical Center, a conglomerate of hospitals, clinics, and research and higher-education facilities. The center employs thousands of workers and is directly responsible for the area’s large biomedical industry.
As the most-visited city in Texas, San Antonio's travel and tourism industry remains a key economic utility. Destinations such as the Alamo and River Walk make the city highly identifiable and popular. The leisure and hospitality segment will be one of the top employment generators over the next five years.
The San Antonio metro is located in the southern portion of central Texas, covering 412 square miles straddling the Interstate 35 corridor, one of the fastest growing areas in the state.
The San Antonio metro covers eight counties — Bandera, Atascosa, Kendall, Comal, Bexar, Guadalupe, Medina and Wilson — and contains more than 2.2 million inhabitants. Five incorporated cities and towns have populations greater than 20,000. San Antonio is the largest, with nearly 1.4 million residents.