Personal income grew by 4.1% across the nation in 2015. The vast majority of metropolitan areas contributed to this growth, but in 10 urban regions, incomes declined. Personal income, which tracks all income received by all persons in an area, generally reflects how well an economy is doing.
Based on recently released data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), 24/7 Wall St. reviewed the metropolitan statistical areas with the largest personal income growth rates, and the ones with the greatest declines.
Growth rates were calculated based on total real personal income — which includes compensation, income from property and from owning a business, minus contributions to the government — for all people in each metro area. Since growth rates were based on aggregate incomes, an increase in a city’s population was often a major driver of growth.
Many of the metro areas where incomes declined have struggled due to their dependence on the floundering extraction industries. Many of the cities where incomes are growing the fastest, by contrast, have budding technology industries.