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The Memphis-Forrest City Combined Statistical Area, TN-MS-AR (CSA) is the commercial and cultural hub of The Mid-South or Ark-Miss-Tenn. The census defined combined statistical area covers ten counties in three states - Tennessee, Mississippi, and Arkansas. As of census 2010 the MSA had a population of 1,324,108 . The Forrest City Micropolitan area was added to the Memphis area in 2012 to form the Memphis-Forrest City Combined Statistical area and had a population of 1,369,548 according to census estimates. The greater Mid-South area as a whole has a population of 2.4 million according to 2013 census estimates. This area is covered by Memphis local news channels and includes the Missouri Bootheel, Northeast Arkansas, West Tennessee, and North Mississippi.
The Memphis Metro area is known locally as the Mid-South. Culturally the Mid-South is more associated with the Deep South and even more specifically the Mississippi Delta than it is the Upland South, which is the case with Tennessee's other large cities. Memphis, Tennessee, is the largest city in the Deep South, third largest in the Southeastern United States, and eighth largest in the Southern United States as a whole. African-Americans make up nearly half the population of the metro area. The Mid-South has the highest percentage of African-Americans of all large metro areas with at least a million people. It is second when metro areas of under a million people are factored in after the Jackson-Vicksburg-Brookhaven, MS Combined Statistical Area. The metro area is blue collar in nature and most of its growth can be attributed to its logistical infrastructure. Recently, however, more companies with technology backgrounds such as Electrolux and Mitsubishi have begun making inroads in the Memphis area.
The Memphis area enjoys a diverse and robust economy. Well positioned on America's largest river and located near the population center of the United States; Memphis is known as America's distribution hub. FedEx is headquartered in Memphis and uses the Memphis International Airport as its global superhub facility making the airport the busiest cargo airport in the United States. UPS also uses Memphis as a major hub. The area is also home to one of the United States largest intermodal logistics centers. This includes being the third largest trucking corridor, fourth largest inland port, and third largest in class I railroad services. The Mid-South has the largest percentage of people employed in logistics in the U.S. The Mid-South is also home to many fortune 500 and 1000 companies such as FedEx, AutoZone, Regions Bank, ServiceMaster, BUPERS, First Tennessee and International Paper. Furthermore, companies such as Nike, Baskin Robbins, Sharp, and Hewlett Packard operate large distribution centers out of Memphis.
Tourism is also a major contributor to the Mid-South's economy with the region being known as the birthplace of Rock and Roll and Blues. Over eight million people visit the Memphis metropolitan area every year for tourist related activities. Over four million people visit Beale Street every year making it the most visited attraction in Tennessee. The Memphis Zoo is one of only four zoos in the U.S. to feature a giant panda and is routinely ranked as one of the best zoos in America. The Tunica casino resort area in Mississippi has over twelve million visitors annually and is the third largest gaming area in the U.S. after Las Vegas and Atlantic City. It also contains a lake beach at Sardis Lake near Batesville, Mississippi.
According to U.S.census estimates for 2013, there were 1,371,110 people residing within the CSA. The racial makeup of the CSA was 45.2% non-Hispanic White, 47.3% African American, 0.5% Native American, 2.2% Asian, <0.1% Pacific Islander, and Hispanic or Latino of any race were 5.1% of the population. Memphis is the only metropolitan/combined statistical area in the United States with over a million people to have a plurality/majority African American population. The Jackson, Mississippimetropolitan area also has this distinction but only has around half a million people.
The median income for a household in the MSA was $47,344 and the mean was $65,463. The median income for a family was $57,780 and the mean was $76,126. The per capita income for the MSA was $24,675.