Wednesday, January 27, 2016

57% of manufacturing-dependent counties have seen median income drop by 10% since 2000

In 57 percent of the U.S. counties classified as "manufacturing-dependent," the median income has dropped by at least 10 percent since 2000, according to analysis of the Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau, Tim Henderson reports for Stateline. "Just 25 percent of other counties experienced a decline that dramatic."

"More than three-quarters of the counties in Michigan, Indiana, Georgia and South Carolina experienced median income declines of 10 percent or more," Henderson writes. Five of the top 10 counties with the biggest drops were in Georgia, a state that has lost more than one-third of its manufacturing jobs since 2000. Lower paying jobs, such as in stores, health care, hotels and restaurants, now employ more people in Georgia than manufacturing.

Nine of the 10 counties where income increased the most—45 percent or more in inflation-adjusted dollars—are in North Dakota, where the oil boom has provided high-paying jobs although the data does not reflect changes after oil prices started dropping in 2014, Henderson writes. (Stateline map: For an interactive version, click here)

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