Profile: Wage & Income Trends

The average salary in the Rural Capital Area (RCA) is $49,000/year, about 86% of the U.S. average.  From 2013-2018 the RCA average salary grew 13%, versus 15% for the U.S.

Average Salary by Industry RCA vs US 2018

Salaries in the Rural Capital Area are below U.S. levels in all industries except Manufacturing.  Salaries in three sectors grew faster than the national rate from 2013-2018:

Other sectors experienced double-digit salary growth, but grew slightly slower than the US:

Trade, Transportation, and Utilities grew just 1% over the period.

Per capita income in the Rural Capital Area has remained below the U.S. average for the past 10 years, reaching 87% of U.S. per Capita income in 2017. As with salary levels, per capita income saw regional declines in 2001 and 2002, but otherwise roughly matched U.S. growth trends between 2007 and 2017, including a decline of 4% in 2009.

Per Capita Income RCA vs US 2007-2017

However, the median household income in the Rural Capital Area is higher than U.S. level, reflecting the prevalence of families (and lots of children).  The RCA median household income reached $72,000 in 2017, reaching 121% of U.S. Median Household Income. The RCA median household income declined by 2.3% in 2009 and 1.5% in 2010, but has grown each year since.

Median Household Income RCA vs US 2007-2017

The Rural Capital Area has much lower poverty levels than the U.S. as a whole. Between 2007 and 2017, poverty levels increased slightly in the RCA through 2012, reaching 11.4% from 9.4% in 2007.  Since then, the RCA poverty rate has fallen to a 15-year low of 8.8% in 2017. 

The regional percentage of children in poverty followed a similar pattern, rising from 12% in 2007 to 15.2% in 2012 and then slowly falling to 10.8% in 2017.  The Rural Capital Area has far fewer children in poverty than the US, which has 18% of all children in poverty.

Percent in Poverty RCA vs US 2007-2017