How The Recession has Affected Per Capita Income, by State

The U.S. Department of Commerce recently released its quarterly data on per capita income (PCI) change, noting an overall drop in 0.5% from 2008 Q4 to 2009 Q1. This is slightly worse than the preceding range, which was registered in at -0.4%. With all the talk about this recession being the “worst since the Great Depression,” these figures may seem to reduce the severity of the recent economic situation; it should be noted this change was preceded by over a decade of unprecedented growth, and the last notable decrease in PCI occurred in 1991. The following graphic illustrates the implications of such change on the U.S.’ various regions, as well as what the average PCI change has meant to individuals living in them.

(click for larger version)


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  • Alan

    I don’t believe these figures for one second! I know college graduates with law degrees who are working at Walmart now. Unemployment rates are soaring towards 10% or greater all over the country. No wonder we are drowning in debt, running huge recurring trade deficits, and watching asset values crumble. Government economic statistics don’t reflect the realities we encounter every day, so how can we accurately diagnose our problems and chart a path towards a sustainble recovery? Yeah, they’re probably closer to reality than Communist Party economic statistics in Russia or China, but don’t make your personal financial decisions based on government reports with little smiley face stickers on them. The plethora of empty or foreclosed houses for sale up & down our valley tell a totally different story, and more are popping up every week. Give me a break DOC – do you think we’re all brain dead?