Iowa City Among Small Number of U.S. Metros with Rising Personal Income

By Dave DeWitte, Reporter

IOWA CITY, Iowa - Iowa City was one of only 134 United States metropolitan areas in which personal income grew last year, according to new data released Monday, August 9.

Personal income in the Iowa City Metropolitan Statistical Area climbed by 1.2 percent in 2009 to $5.78 billion after rising by 5.1 percent the preceding year.

On average, personal income declined 1.8 percent nationwide in 2009, after rising 2.7 percent in 2009.

The Cedar Rapids Metropolitan Statistical Area was in the majority of 223 metros in which personal income declined, although the decline was lower than the national average.

Personal income in the Cedar Rapids Metropolitan Statistical Area fell by 0.7 percent in 2009, to $9.83 billion, after rising by 5 percent the preceding year.

The data was released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis, which defines personal income as "income by all personals from all sources."

The bureau also released per capita personal income figures for all of the metropolitan statistical areas.

Per capita personal income is the personal income of residents of a given area divided by the resident population of the area.

Per capita personal income fell by 0.8 percent in Iowa City and by 1.2 percent in Cedar Rapids in 2009.

Per capita personal income in Iowa City for 2009 was $37,985, ranking 108th nationally among metros.

In Cedar Rapids, per capital personal Income for 2009 was $38,345, ranking 92nd nationally.

The report said most of the metros with rising personal income in 2009 had a gain because of an increase in transfer payments, such as unemployment insurance, Social Security or retirement benefits.

Net earnings of workers only increased in 57 metros, with most of the gains concentrated in the government employment sector.

Only five metros in the entire country had private sector earnings growth account for most of their earnings growth in 2009. Only one of them, Cape Girardeau, Mo., is in the Midwest.

The biggest decline in per capital personal income was 8.4 percent in Midland, Texas. The greatest increase was 12 percent in Jacksonville, N.C.
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