State Personal Income Trends 2012

State personal income continued to increase in 2012, growing by 3.5 percent over 2011. That growth rate was slower, however, than in 2011, when income grew by 5.2 percent over 2010. Personal income grew the most in North Dakota in 2012—by an impressive 12.4 percent—while personal income fell slightly in South Dakota—the only state to have negative growth over the period—falling by 0.2 percent.

On a per capita basis, personal income was $42,693 in 2012, an increase of 2.7 percent over the per capita rate in 2011 of $41,560. Nationally in 2012, Connecticut had the highest per capita personal income at $58,908, while Mississippi had the lowest at $33,073. Growth rates in per capita personal income from 2011 to 2012 also varied significantly across states. Only one state—South Dakota—posted a negative growth rate over this period, while other states’ growth rates ranged from a low of 1.07 percent in Nevada to a high of 9.9 percent in North Dakota.

North Dakota claimed the fastest personal income growth rate of any state for the fifth time in six years, due primarily to a steep increase in oil and gas extraction in the state. Since 2006, personal income in North Dakota has grown at a compound annual rate of 9.2 percent, more than three times the 2.9 percent growth rate of the other 49 states. In 2012, mining—which includes oil and gas extraction—and construction accounted for 43 percent of private nonfarm earnings growth in North Dakota.