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Income Levels: SC Falls Further Behind

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South Carolina’s “lost decade” keeps on keeping on …

According to data released this week by the U.S. Census Bureau, the Palmetto State saw its median household income plummet from $48,401 to $43,107 over the last dozen years – a 10.9 percent inflation-adjusted decrease which far outpaces the national decline.

Median household income for all Americans dropped from $55,030 to $51,371 over the same period – a 6.6 percent decrease.

As it stands now, South Carolina ranks No. 42 among the fifty states in median household income – same as last year. In 2000, the state ranked No. 37.

How much further can we slide? We may soon find out …

In addition to seeing its income levels slide, South Carolina has also seen a dramatic increase in the number of its citizens living in poverty. In 2000, there were 557,271 Palmetto State residents (or 14.4 percent of the population). classified as “poor.” Last year that number had climbed to 837,770 – or 18.3 percent of the population.

Again, that’s well above the national poverty rate of 15.9 percent.

The U.S. Census data comes one day after FITS reported that South Carolina’s labor force had shrunk to a record low of 58.5 percent.

Obviously a shrinking work force and plummeting income levels are terrible news for incumbent “Republican” Nikki Haley, who has built her reelection campaign around her ability to attract jobs to the Palmetto State.

U.S. CENSUS INCOME DATA
U.S. CENSUS POVERTY DATA