By some counts, Americans are doing well. The unemployment rate was at a respectable 3.5% by the end of 2019, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The median household income in the United States is $61,937—up 2.7% from 2016. Average hourly earnings for workers on nonfarm payrolls climbed to $28.32 in December 2019. In 2018, the official poverty rate dropped from 2007 figures for the first time in more than a decade, according to data from the U.S. Census Bureau. And in the first week of 2020, the Dow Jones hit a record high, potentially setting American traders up for another great year.
The country’s growing wealth hasn’t trickled down to every American family, though. The United States has staggering wealth inequality, with the gap between the country’s wealthiest and poorest people more closely resembling that of China and Russia than other advanced democracies. More than two-thirds of the country’s wealth is owned by the top 10% of income earners. Meanwhile, nearly one in five households across the United States earn less than $25,000 a year (19.6%), while 6.3% have an annual income that falls below $10,000.
Where you live can make a big impact on your financial situation. To find out where Americans are struggling the most across the country, Stacker compiled a list of the lowest-earning county in every state, based on data from the U.S. Census Bureau's 2018 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates (released in December 2019). The list only considered counties with a minimum of 1,000 households and ranked them by their median household incomes. The counties are listed in alphabetical order based on their state’s name.
Read on to learn which county in every state has the lowest household income and see how your area compares with the rest.
You may also like: Highest-earning county in every state