How rich is each US state?
From US Chamber of Commerce, February, 2020 (excerpts)
Despite the fact that they are all part of the same country, US states vary considerably in terms of wealth. For example, California’s 2018 GDP of $2.94 billion (gross domestic product) was over 25 times higher than Mississippi’s in the same year. Though Mississippi’s population is 13 times smaller than California’s, the fact remains: states are not created equal when it comes to gross assets.
In order to elucidate the wealth disparity between states, we’ve ranked the richness of all 50 using 6 variables, including real per capita personal income, per capita consumption expenditures, poverty rates, state and local general revenue, per capita spending, and the amount a resident of the state needs to be considered part of its top 5 percent.
The results are telling, with regional clusters appearing at the top, middle, and bottom of the ranking. However, there are a few surprises, and you might be interested to find out where your state falls on the list. …
Does a state’s poverty rate correlate with its total wealth?
The short answer is yes, the poverty rate of most states–which is defined as the ratio of the population whose per capita income falls below the US poverty threshold of $12,140 (or $25,100 for a household of 4)is aligned with its overall wealth ranking. Of the 10 states with the highest poverty rates, 8 are among the top 10 poorest states, while the remaining 2 are among the top 15 poorest. The correlation is less strong for the 10 states with the lowest poverty rates, but nevertheless present: 4 of them are among the 10 richest states, while an additional 2 belong to the top 15 richest states.
However, there are some interesting exceptions. Utah, whose 3-year average poverty rate of 7.9% is the 3rd lowest in the country, is only the 31st richest state. The Beehive State’s real per capita income and state spending numbers are both averages, indicating that while Utah doesn’t have a high concentration of wealthy, high-spending people, it doesn’t have a large population of people in the lowest income brackets, either.
Additionally, 2 of the richest states, New York and Alaska, have higher poverty rates than one would expect, indicating an above-average wealth inequality gap between the states’ richest and poorest citizens.
Alaska, the 4th richest state overall with a high real per capita income and the by far the highest per capita spending of any state, has the 19th highest poverty rate, which, at 12.2%, is above the national average. New York, the 3rd richest state, is also marked by a poverty rate that’s high in relation to other variables: its rate of 11.8% is around the national average.
The 10 Richest States in the US
As a remote island archipelago in the Pacific ocean, Hawaii is literally separate from the pack. The state’s wealth-related statistics are unique: Hawaii’s real per capita income of $42,507 is by far the lowest of any state in the top 10, (Hawaii per capita income is 5th-lowest in USA) however, poverty is also low, and per capita, state spending and state revenue are both high.
Hawaii gets a boost from its lucrative tourism industry: the state welcomed a record 9.95 million visitors in 2018. Altogether, visitors to the state spent a collective $17.82 billion, which is a 6.8% increase over the previous year….
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