Wednesday, July 13, 2011

County Incomes Converged in 2009

Per capita personal income (PCPI) is a figure calculated by the Bureau of Economic Analysis and is defined as the annual sum of all resident income divided by the resident population on July 1st of each year. PCPI among Oregon's metropolitan areas has historically outpaced that of non-metro areas, although metro areas were more significantly impacted by the recent recession. Between 2007 and 2009, the inflation adjusted PCPI of Oregon's metro areas fell from $38,994 to $37,719; a 3.3 percent decrease. Non-metropolitan areas throughout the state experienced a 0.7 percent increase over the same time period, from $30,526 to $30,733.

Of Oregon's metro areas, the Portland metropolitan statistical area (MSA) had the greatest per capita personal income in 2009 ($39,206), while the Salem MSA had the smallest figure ($32,320). However, the Salem MSA saw the greatest income growth over the period (4.5%). The Bend area fell 0.5 percent from 2005 to 2009, the only decline of any metro area.

Looking at counties, Clackamas held the top PCPI ranking in 2009 with $43,646 which is 120 percent of the statewide average. The counties in north-central Oregon - bordering the Columbia River - have definitely seen the most gain. Hood River, Wasco, Sherman, and Gilliam counties posted a collective 18.0 percent gain over the 2005 to 2009 period; from $30,854 to $36,481. Specifically, Sherman and its neighbor Gilliam County stand out as ones who broke the trend, and the charts. From 2005 to 2009, they gained 26.8 percent and 22.4 percent, respectively.

Read more about metro and county-level PCPI in the full article, written by Economist Andre Harboe ( or 503-947-1873).

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