This report is intended to provide an indepth trade area analysis of Linton, North Dakota. Specific analyses included determining Linton's main and greater trade areas, identifying the demographic profile of Linton shoppers, examining important and less important services for patron shoppers of Linton, identifying neighboring cities that area shoppers patronize, determining distances area shoppers traveled to Linton, and listing popular newspapers and radio stations among area residents. Current trade area information for Linton was obtained from a statewide trade area survey conducted by the Department of Agricultural Economics at North Dakota State University in 1989. Recent trends (1980 to 1989) in Linton population, retail sales, per capita income, pull factors, and Emmons County population and employment were identified and discussed. Linton's population, trade area population, retail sales, and pull factors along with Emmons County population and average annual employment have all decreased throughout the 1980s. Although most demographic and economic measurements have decreased, Linton has fared as well as other North Dakota cities with similar population, and has fared favorably compared to smaller competing trade centers. The economic situation found in Linton and Emmons County are somewhat typical of the problems found in rural North Dakota communities in the 1980s. Linton's trade areas were broken down into main and greater trade areas. A main trade area (MTA) was defined as an area where the majority of township residents purchase a majority of selected goods and services in one city. A greater trade area (GTA) was defined as the area beyond the MTA where some township residents purchase some selected goods and services in one city. Linton's MTA decreased in size by six townships, compared to MTA boundaries determined in 1971. The typical household for survey respondents appears to be a middle-aged married couple, who have completed high school, have few children at home, primarily are employed in agriculture and professional/technical professions, and have resided in the area a large portion of their lives. Main trade area residents traveled an average of 14.3 and 14.4 miles to Linton to purchase selected convenience and specialty goods and services, respectively. About one-third (30.2 percent) of the respondents who purchased 50 percent or more of convenience and specialty goods in Linton traveled between 16 and 20 miles to purchase the item.Linton appears to be an important source of goods and services for those who shop in Linton; however, Linton could capture much more of the available market for two-thirds of the nonagricultural and about half of the agricultural goods and services included in the survey questionnaire. Bismarck, Strasburg, Hazelton, and some cities in South Dakota were the most popular trade centers for the purchase of nonagricultural goods and services by Linton MTA residents who did not purchase a majority of the good or service in Linton. Zeeland, Hague, and Strasburg were popular for purchasing agricultural goods and services. Outshopping analysis revealed no substantial demographic or socioeconomic differences between Linton MTA residents purchasing 50 percent or more and those purchasing less than 50 percent of selected goods and services in Linton. Slight differences between groups were evident in miles traveled and average income. The Bismarck Tribune was the most popular daily newspaper for both Linton MTA and GTA residents. The Emmons County Record was the most popular weekly newspaper for Linton MTA and GTA residents. The most popular radio stations for Linton MTA residents included KFYR of Bismarck, KBMR of Bismarck and KNDR of Mandan. Although economic times have been difficult, Linton has not lost as much of its retail sales as other cities of similar size; however, Linton does not capture as much of its available market as cities of similar size. Linton has retained some of its past trade areas and should remain an important trade center in southcentral North Dakota.
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