//Household incomes in 2017 stayed on existing trends in most states; incomes in 21 states are still below their pre-recession levels

Household incomes in 2017 stayed on existing trends in most states; incomes in 21 states are still below their pre-recession levels

Click Here to Get This Post in PDF

Household incomes in 2017 stayed on existing trends in most states; incomes in 21 states are still below their pre-recession levels

The state income data for the American Community Survey (ACS), released this morning by the Census Bureau, showed that in 2017, household incomes across the states stayed largely on the same trajectories that they were heading in 2016, with a handful of exceptions. From 2016 to 2017, inflation-adjusted median households incomes grew in 40 states and the District of Columbia (24 of these changes were statistically significant.) The ACS data showed an increase of 2.5 percent increase in the inflation-adjusted median household income for the country as a whole—an increase of $1,492 for a typical U.S. household. Despite these increases, households in 21 states still had inflation-adjusted median incomes in 2017 below their 2007 pre-recession values.

From 2016 to 2017, the largest percentage gains in household income occurred in the District of Columbia, where the typical household experienced an increase of $5,258 in their annual income—an increase of 6.8 percent. With this increase, the District of Columbia now has the highest median household income in the country at $82,372—though comparing D.C. to states is problematic, since D.C. is a city, not a state. Maryland remains the state with the highest median household income at $80,776—a value essentially unchanged (0.2 percent growth) from 2016 to 2017. Households in 13 states experienced growth faster than the U.S. average of 2.5 percent: Montana (4.5 percent), Maine (3.8 percent), California (3.8 percent), Washington (3.6 percent), Tennessee (3.5 percent), Arizona (3.4 percent), Rhode Island (3.2 percent), Nebraska (3.1 percent), Colorado (3.0 percent) New Jersey (3.0 percent), Nevada (2.9 percent), Virginia (2.8 percent), and Georgia (2.7 percent).

From 2016 to 2017, there were 10 states in which the median household income declined, though only 1 of these—Alaska, at 6.3 percent—had a statistically significant drop. Alaska was one of eight states plus the District of Columbia where median household income moved in a different direction in 2017 than it did in 2016. In D.C., Louisiana, Montana, and New Hampshire, incomes started rising in 2017, having declined in 2016. In Alaska, Connecticut, Idaho, New Mexico, and West Virginia, household incomes fell in 2017, having grown in 2016.

Change in median household income, 2016–2017

State Median household income, 2017 Change 2007 to 2017 Change 2000 to 2017 2017 median income as percent of national median Change 2016 to 2017
Alabama $48,123 0.4% 1.1% 79.8% 1.9%
Alaska $73,181 -3.8% -2.8% 121.3% -6.3%
Arizona $56,581 -4.1% 3.1% 93.8% 3.4%
Arkansas $45,869 1.7% -2.9% 76.0% 1.3%
California $71,805 1.3% 8.2% 119.0% 3.8%
Colorado $69,117 5.9% 4.7% 114.6% 3.0%
Connecticut $74,168 -4.9% -3.7% 122.9% -1.1%
Delaware $62,852 -2.7% -7.4% 104.2% -0.3%
Florida $52,594 -6.9% -2.9% 87.2% 1.3%
Georgia $56,183 -3.3% -4.4% 93.1% 2.7%
Hawaii $77,765 3.2% 5.9% 128.9% 2.2%
Idaho $52,225 -4.5% -2.3% 86.6% -1.3%
Illinois $62,992 -1.6% -3.2% 104.4% 1.2%
Indiana $54,181 -3.4% -6.7% 89.8% 1.4%
Iowa $58,570 4.8% 7.8% 97.1% 2.0%
Kansas $56,422 0.6% -1.6% 93.5% 0.6%
Kentucky $48,375 1.6% 3.4% 80.2% 1.5%
Louisiana $46,145 -4.6% 4.6% 76.5% 0.1%
Maine $56,277 3.7% 8.0% 93.3% 3.8%
Maryland $80,776 0.4% 8.2% 133.9% 0.2%
Massachusetts $77,385 5.0% 9.2% 128.3% 0.6%
Michigan $54,909 -3.1% -11.1% 91.0% 2.4%
Minnesota $68,388 3.7% 0.6% 113.3% 2.1%
Mississippi $43,529 1.3% -6.6% 72.1% 2.1%
Missouri $53,578 0.5% 1.3% 88.8% 1.4%
Montana $53,386 3.7% 13.3% 88.5% 4.5%
Nebraska $59,970 7.7% 12.7% 99.4% 3.1%
Nevada $58,003 -10.9% -3.9% 96.1% 2.9%
New Hampshire $73,381 -0.5% 1.1% 121.6% 1.3%
New Jersey $80,088 1.1% 3.7% 132.7% 3.0%
New Mexico $46,744 -4.6% -1.8% 77.5% -2.1%
New York $64,894 2.6% 4.2% 107.6% 1.0%
North Carolina $52,752 -0.1% -1.9% 87.4% 2.1%
North Dakota $61,843 19.6% 26.4% 102.5% -0.2%
Ohio $54,021 -1.9% -4.5% 89.5% 1.1%
Oklahoma $50,051 1.8% 3.0% 83.0% -0.3%
Oregon $60,212 4.5% 8.2% 99.8% 2.5%
Pennsylvania $59,195 3.1% 4.9% 98.1% 1.9%
Rhode Island $63,870 0.9% 2.5% 105.9% 3.2%
South Carolina $50,570 -1.3% -2.5% 83.8% 0.0%
South Dakota $56,521 10.1% 14.0% 93.7% 1.6%
Tennessee $51,340 2.5% -1.3% 85.1% 3.5%
Texas $59,206 5.3% 5.6% 98.1% 2.5%
Utah $68,358 4.9% 5.5% 113.3% 1.4%
Vermont $57,513 -2.5% -0.3% 95.3% -2.4%
Virginia $71,535 1.6% 6.6% 118.6% 2.8%
Washington $70,979 8.0% 10.2% 117.6% 3.6%
DC $82,372 28.3% 41.4% 136.5% 6.8%
West Virginia $43,469 -0.8% 5.0% 72.0% -1.9%
Wisconsin $59,305 -0.8% -1.3% 98.3% 2.2%
Wyoming $60,434 -1.2% 9.9% 100.2% -1.2%
ChartData Download data

The data below can be saved or copied directly into Excel.

The data underlying the figure.

Source: EPI Analysis of American Community Survey data

‘);
$(‘#twitter-overlay’)
.height(winHeight)
.css({
‘position’: ‘fixed’,
‘top’: 0,
‘left’: 0,
‘width’: ‘100%’,
‘z-index’: ‘9000’,
‘background’: ‘rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.6)’,
‘text-align’: ‘center’
})
.find(‘span’)
.css({
‘background’: ‘white’,
‘padding’: ’20px’,
‘border-radius’: ‘5px’,
‘position’: ‘relative’,
‘top’: offset + ‘px’
})
.find(‘i’)
.css({
‘color’: ‘#28b6f0’,
‘font-size’: ‘1.2em’
})
.end().end()
.fadeIn(function() {
var ajax_data = {action: ‘epi_twitter_image’, image: ‘http://www.epi.org//files/charts/img/155679-19824.png’, title: ‘Change in median household income, 2016–2017’, url: ‘https://www.epi.org/blog/household-incomes-in-2017-stayed-on-existing-trends-in-most-states-incomes-in-21-states-are-still-below-their-pre-recession-levels/#Income’};
jQuery.post(‘https://www.epi.org/wp-admin/admin-ajax.php’, ajax_data, function(response) {
$(‘#twitter-overlay’).fadeOut();
if (response == ‘failed’) {
alert(‘There was an error preparing this tweet…’);
} else {
var vars = {};
window.location.href.replace(/[?&]+([^=&]+)=?([^]*)/gi, function(m, key, value) {
vars[key] = value;
});
if (vars[‘view’] == ’embed’) {
window.open(response);
} else {
console.log(response);
window.location.href = response;
}
}
});
});

setTimeout(function() { $(‘#twitter-overlay’).fadeOut(function() { $(this).remove(); }); }, 2000);

}

Copy the code below to embed this chart on your website.

The 2.5 percent increase in median household incomes reported in the ACS is a larger increase than what the Census Bureau reported on Wednesday in their annual release of data from the Current Population Survey (CPS). This is not unusual, and does not change the story told by the CPS data that household income growth for middle-income households is slowing. The ACS and CPS have different samples and cover slightly different timeframes, which can explain the larger growth rate seen in the ACS. The CPS surveys all of its respondents in March of each year, and asks them to describe their income in the preceding calendar year. The ACS is a rolling 12-month survey—i.e., households are surveyed on an ongoing basis throughout the year and when surveyed, respondents are asked to report their income over the preceding 12 months. Thus, a significant portion of 2017 ACS respondents (those surveyed in the first half of 2017) were describing income mostly from 2016. Similarly, the 2016 ACS partially describes income in 2015. Therefore, the change in ACS incomes from 2016 to 2017 is describing changes occurring over a somewhat broader period that includes portions of 2015. Because household income growth nationally has slowed from 2015 to 2017, including changes from earlier in this period is likely leading to the ACS showing a larger increase than the calendar-year changes reported in the CPS.