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Delta Associates’ year-end retail outlook is out, and it has some optimistic things to say about the local market: Washington-area residents already earn more than people anywhere else in the country, and are expected to just get richer.

Of course, we know there’s a big difference between what District residents earn, vs. folks in the suburbs. That also holds true with retail square footage: While the metro area has 26.4 square feet of shopping centers per capita (compared 23.3 square feet nationwide), D.C. proper has a paltry 8.6. Nevertheless, the graph below shows that Washingtonians have considerably higher consumer confidence, compared to their wealthier suburban brethren. Could that be that living in cities makes people happier and more optimistic? I’d like to think so!