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Income and Poverty
Personal Income and Wage and Salary
Source: Bureau of Economic Analysis
Source Update: November 2015

Description: The Bureau of Economic Analysis, part of the United States Department of Commerce, publishes the Regional Economic Information System (REIS) annually. REIS concentrates on broad income and employment data. REIS measures jobs more broadly than most other sources such as BLS' ES202 program or its metropolitan area only Current Employment Statistics (non-agricultural employment). REIS Provides the most readily accessible long-term database of county level personal income and employment. REIS jobs data include agricultural and non-agricultural jobs; public as well as private employment; self-employment as well as wage and salary employment; and workers not covered by unemployment insurance as well as those covered. Along with the strength of broad and consistent measurement of employment and income, REIS has the shortcoming of only annual updates that are about 2 years behind other, narrower measures of jobs and income.

Personal Income broadly measures income earned by an area's residents whether that income was earned within or outside that area. Income earned by workers who commute to another county would be included. Income earned within the county by other counties' residents would be excluded. Personal income is the sum of resident earnings by place of work less personal payments for social insurance such as social security and medicare taxes, plus transfer payments such as social security and veterans’ benefits, plus dividends, interest and rent.

Personal Income is an indicator of the size of a local area economy. Income primarily may rise as a result of increased economic production, income earning population or price levels (inflation). Increased transfer payments or non-labor income such as interest may contribute to rising income as well. Rises related to inflation generally do not increase living standards.

Charts and Data:  For US, State and Hillsborough County:  Personal Income by several different factors 

Poverty and Median Household Income
Source: United States Census Bureau, Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates
Source Update: December 2015

The Census web site states: "The Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates program was created by the U.S. Census Bureau with support from a consortium of Federal agencies to provide more current estimates of selected income and poverty statistics than the most recent Decennial Census. Estimates are created for states, counties, and school districts. The main objective of this program is to provide updated estimates of income and poverty statistics for the administration of Federal programs and the allocation of Federal funds to local jurisdictions." In addition to poverty estimates the main income estimate produced by this program is Median Household Income.

The Census web site explains poverty measurement. "The U.S. Census Bureau uses a set of money income thresholds that vary by family size and composition to detect who is poor. If a family's total income is less than that family's threshold, then that family, and every individual in it, is considered poor. The poverty thresholds do not vary geographically, but they are updated annually for inflation using the Consumer Price Index (CPI-U). The official poverty definition counts money income before taxes and does not include capital gains and non-cash benefits (such as public housing, medicaid, and food stamps)."

Charts and Data: For US, State and Hillsborough County: Poverty Rates Over Time; Poverty Rates of Persons Under 18; and Median Household Income Over Time