Income Trends

According to new data from the U.S. Census Bureau, real median household income in Iowa was higher last year than it was before the Great Recession - one of only 13 states that can make the claim. When adjusted for inflation, annual income in Iowa has grown by $1,966 since 2007 to $57,810 in 2014 - above the U.S. median of $53,657. For the country as a whole, inflation-adjusted median household income fell by $3,700 - or 6.5 percent - from 2007 to 2014. 

According to new data from the U.S. Census Bureau, real median household income in Utah was higher last year than it was before the Great Recession - one of only 13 states that can make the claim. When adjusted for inflation, annual income in Utah has grown by $2,262 since 2007 to $63,383 in 2014 - above the U.S. median of $53,657. For the country as a whole, inflation-adjusted median household income fell by $3,700 - or 6.5 percent - from 2007 to 2014. 

According to new data from the U.S. Census Bureau, real median household income in Missouri was higher last year than it was before the Great Recession - one of only 13 states that can make the claim. When adjusted for inflation, annual income in Missouri has grown by $4,100 since 2007 to $56,630 in 2014 - above the U.S. median of $53,657. For the country as a whole, inflation-adjusted median household income fell by $3,700 - or 6.5 percent - from 2007 to 2014. 

According to new data from the U.S. Census Bureau, real median household income in Vermont was higher last year than it was before the Great Recession - one of only 13 states that can make the claim. When adjusted for inflation, annual income in Vermont has grown by $6,597 since 2007 to $60,708 in 2014 - above the U.S. median of $53,657. For the country as a whole, inflation-adjusted median household income fell by $3,700 - or 6.5 percent - from 2007 to 2014. 

Real median household income in North Dakota was higher last year than it was before the Great Recession - one of only 13 states that can make the claim. When adjusted for inflation, annual income in North Dakota has grown by $6,830 since 2007 to $60,730 in 2014 - above the U.S. median of $53,657. For the country as a whole, inflation-adjusted median household income fell by $3,700 - or 6.5 percent - from 2007 to 2014. 

Median household income remains below pre-recession levels in 37 states, when adjusted for inflation. In 2007, median household income was $57,357 (in 2014 dollars) - $3,700 more than in 2014. State median household incomes ranged from a low of $35,521 in Mississippi to $76,165 in Maryland in 2014.

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Mirroring a national trend, many more people in the Midwest are living in concentrated areas of poverty — a demographic trend that carries with it implications related to everything from crime and health, to economic and educational opportunity.

State median household income in 2012 ranged from a low of $36,641 in Mississippi to a high of $71,836 in Maryland. Median income has been on the decline since the recession, falling 8.3 percent since 2007.

Discussion about income mobility in the United States usually revolves around the concept of upward mobility which is defined as a person’s chance to make it to a higher economic strata than the one they arrived in.  While the concept is controversial and subject to many debates, a similar concept called intergenerational mobility is less discussed. Intergenerational mobility is defined as how the economic status of children compare to their parents. If for instance children of poor parents are likely to remain poor then there is low intergenerational mobility.

Real median household income fell between 2010 and 2011 by 1.5 percent—the second consecutive annual drop—landing at $50,054 in 2011. Nevada saw the biggest drop from 2010 to 2011 in real median household income—10.9 percent—while Oklahoma saw the biggest year over year increase—9.0 percent. Median household income in 2011 ranged from a low of $39,856 in Kentucky to a high of $68,876 in Maryland. From 2010 to 2011, 28 states experienced a decrease in real median household income while 21 states saw an increase and one state—North Carolina—saw no year-over-year change.

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