Charleston’s Income Growth Below National Average


Area income, earnings growth trail national average

April 24, 2008

By Scott Miller – Charleston Business Journal

Income growth in Charleston, Berkeley and Dorchester counties did not keep pace with the national average in 2006, according to a report released today by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis, a division of the U.S. Department of Commerce.

Average per-capita income in all three counties remains below the national average of $36,714, a 5.6% increase from 2006. That’s three percentage points higher than the growth in Berkeley County, nearly two points higher than Dorchester County and about one point more than Charleston County.

Statewide, per-capita income increased 4.6% to $29,767. That’s 45th in the nation.

Beaufort County had the highest per-capita income in the state at $41,724. South Carolina has 46 counties.

Charleston County

Per-capita income increased 4.8% from 2005 to $36,326, second highest in the state. That’s 122% of the state average and 99% of the national average.

The average annual income growth rate from 1996 to 2006 was 5%, compared to 4.3% nationally and 4% for the state.

Berkeley County

At $27,508, Berkeley County’s per-capita income ranked 19th in the state and increased 2.5% in 2006. The income is 91% of the state average and 74% of the national average.

Ten years ago, the county ranked 37th in the state in per-capita income. But since 1996, the average annual growth rate in the county has been 5.8%, well above state and national levels.

Dorchester County

Per-capita income increased 3.8% to $29,767, ranking Dorchester County 17th highest in the state. The figure represents 92% of the state average and 75% of the national average.

The average annual income growth rate in Dorchester County since 1996 is 4%, equal to the state average and slightly behind the national average of 4.3%.


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