Personal incomes fell in 2009 for most metro areas — with a notable exception

posted at 12:55 pm on August 10, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

The year 2009 was an annus horribilis for American workers, a new report from the Bureau of Economic Analysis shows, and in almost every city — almost.  Personal income declined in more than two-thirds of American metropolitan areas, and only when counting unemployment benefits.  Without government transfers, personal income only rose in 57 of 366 metropolitan areas.  And in that 57, only five urban areas saw personal income gains from increased activity in the private sector.

The rest?  Well, let’s just say that government work was a growth industry in the Obama administration.  In fact, only three metropolitan areas of more than 1 million people saw an increase in personal income in 2009.  Want to guess what one of them was?

Among the 52 MSAs with a population of one million or more, only three had an increase in both net earnings and personal income in 2009 (Washington, D.C.; San Antonio, Texas; and Virginia Beach, Virginia). The biggest gains in compensation in these three MSAs were in the federal government (civilian and military combined). Private sector compensation declined in these three MSAs.

As for the rest of the nation …

Personal income declined in 2009 in most of the nation’s metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs), according to estimates released today by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis. Personal income declined in 223 MSAs, increased in 134, and remained unchanged in 9 MSAs. On average, MSA personal income fell 1.8 percent in 2009, after rising 2.7 percent in 2008. …

Although personal income grew in 134 MSAs, in most cases this growth represented an increase in transfer receipts (unemployment insurance benefits, for example). Only in 57 MSAs did the net earnings of workers increase in 2009. In most of the 57 MSAs where net earnings increased, the gains were concentrated in the government sector. Military earnings growth was particularly strong in seven of the ten MSAs with the fastest personal income growth in 2009: Jacksonville and Fayetteville, North Carolina; Manhattan, Kansas; Elizabethtown, Kentucky; Lawton, Oklahoma; Clarksville, Tennessee; and Killeen, Texas.

Only five MSAs did the growth come primarily from the private sector:

Only in five MSAs (Kennewick, Washington; Cumberland, Maryland; Morgantown, West Virginia; Cape Girardeau, Missouri; and Ithaca, New York;) did the private sector account for most of earnings growth in 2009.

24/7 Wall Street concludes:

The average citizen is likely to look at these Commerce Department numbers and wonder where his tax payments are going. It would appear that some of that money has gone to increase the pay of the  government’s workforce during what is supposed to be a period of federal austerity. The opposite is true. Perhaps it requires more, better-paid people to run all the government’s stimulus packages.

Small wonder Joe Biden and Barack Obama keep talking about “Recovery Summer.”  In Washington DC, boom times have arrived.  In that Beltway bubble, floated by taxpayer dollars from everywhere else that income is falling, the economy looks pretty darned tasty — as long as the electorate doesn’t send a new Congress to Capitol Hill to stop the gravy train.


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Recovery Summer in full swing!

sandee on August 10, 2010 at 12:58 PM

Recovery for me, not for thee.

Has some cake..

ted c on August 10, 2010 at 12:58 PM

The year 2009 was an annus horribilis for American workers

And this administration is full of horribilis anuses.

UltimateBob on August 10, 2010 at 12:59 PM

In that Beltway bubble, floated by taxpayer dollars from everywhere else that income is falling, the economy looks pretty darned tasty

time to pop that bubble…

cmsinaz on August 10, 2010 at 1:00 PM

It’s easy! Just sign a piece of paper giving someone a raise, and *poof* they have a raise.
Where does the money come from? Who cares?

redshirt on August 10, 2010 at 1:00 PM

unexpectedly

Skandia Recluse on August 10, 2010 at 1:01 PM

“Charity begins at home,” -Obooba.

Akzed on August 10, 2010 at 1:02 PM

And this administration is full of horribilis anuses.

UltimateBob on August 10, 2010 at 12:59 PM

well played!

Monica on August 10, 2010 at 1:02 PM

This is depressing but a must-see.

Click on ‘Play’ and watch as the colors for each county, which show rates of unemployment, change with the month and year, for the last three and one half years.

Urban Infidel on August 10, 2010 at 1:05 PM

Bureau of Economic Analysis
Regional Economic Accounts
—————————

SQ1 – Personal income

Data Table Options

Personal income
(Millions of dollars, seasonally adjusted at annual rates)
[SQ1 – Quarterly personal income]

http://www.bea.gov/regional/sqpi/drill.cfm

canopfor on August 10, 2010 at 1:05 PM

Some areas are doing better than others!

I fully expect those wrongs to be righted!!(sarc).

canopfor on August 10, 2010 at 1:07 PM

Semi-old news, given this The Atlantic note from April 4, 2008:

As the national economy runs into serious trouble, it seems that the Washington region is experiencing only a relatively small slowdown in our local job situation. On some level — good for us! But still, it’s striking how much of a disconnect there is not just between the perceptions of Beltway folks and realities in the country, but actual reality in the DC area and the rest of the country.

The general media and political climate would probably be quite different if the places where politicos live were feeling a bit more of the pain.

Obama did better than Bush in shielding Washington from the pain of the rest of the nation, because under Bush, the Washington area experienced a slight slowdown, while under Obama, it’s apparently experiencing a substantial amount of job growth.

It’s nice to know where the Stimulus dollars of the rest of the nation are actually going.

unclesmrgol on August 10, 2010 at 1:09 PM

Where does the money come from? Who cares?

redshirt on August 10, 2010 at 1:00 PM

It comes from Obama’s stash, I don’t know…..

oh wait….his stash is from all of us taxpayers, isn’t it?

Vntnrse on August 10, 2010 at 1:10 PM

Give Republicans the keys Cousin Eddie so they can back up the car to when Republicans were in charge and people had jobs and incomes!

dhunter on August 10, 2010 at 1:10 PM

Hey, it costs money to bus union douchebags out to the suburbs for a day of terrorizing the families of private businessmen; how are they supposed to live huh?

Bishop on August 10, 2010 at 1:11 PM

1/1/2011 they’ll be ramping up even more. The evil rich are going to get it when the Bush Tax Cuts expire.

BowHuntingTexas on August 10, 2010 at 1:12 PM

Urban Infidel on August 10, 2010 at 1:05 PM

Sad, only one county in my state stayed below 6%. You guessed it, the county where the state capitol is located.

lowandslow on August 10, 2010 at 1:12 PM

Where can I get a pitch fork and a torch? Or do I need a license for that too???

Dread Pirate Roberts VI on August 10, 2010 at 1:14 PM

during what is supposed to be a period of federal austerity.

Supposed to be?
Those currently not in control might think so, but in control seem to think that they have to make up for private austerity.

Count to 10 on August 10, 2010 at 1:15 PM

Didn’t any of these people see the video of Bell, CA? People are sick of these folks.

Cindy Munford on August 10, 2010 at 1:15 PM

Public Jobs, are paid for by both Private and Public employer Taxes. Eventually, as the Private sector shrinks, where does the money come from?

Kini on August 10, 2010 at 1:15 PM

Wait until President Bush’s tax cuts expire. They’ll take even more of what little we have left. Michelle gotta boogie on the Riviera.

Herb on August 10, 2010 at 1:17 PM

And Marie Antoinette always thought things are going just great here at Versailles.

Cicero43 on August 10, 2010 at 1:22 PM

This is depressing but a must-see.

Click on ‘Play’ and watch as the colors for each county, which show rates of unemployment, change with the month and year, for the last three and one half years.

Urban Infidel on August 10, 2010 at 1:05 PM

Urban Infidel: Yes,that is a MUST SEE,and WOW,it looks like
Hopey/Changey Black Death a spread’n across
the US landscape!!:)

canopfor on August 10, 2010 at 1:23 PM

The picture of Andy Stern was a nice touch. Very appropriate.

KS Rex on August 10, 2010 at 1:27 PM

Obama is acting like a spoiled brat by blamining Bush for everything he has made worse. Sickening to know we have a leader with the mind of a child taking us deeper into a depression and has no clue what to do. We may survive 4 years of Obama, but can we survive those that put him into power?

volsense on August 10, 2010 at 1:27 PM

I wonder what part of Spain is booming!!

Or,

What part of Ship building in New Zealand is
booming,ala,Kerrys $7M yacht!!!(sarc).

canopfor on August 10, 2010 at 1:27 PM

Obama did better than Bush in shielding Washington from the pain of the rest of the nation, because under Bush, the Washington area experienced a slight slowdown, while under Obama, it’s apparently experiencing a substantial amount of job growth.

It’s nice to know where the Stimulus dollars of the rest of the nation are actually going.

unclesmrgol on August 10, 2010 at 1:09 PM

-

It’s all about consolidation and fixing up the house rather than preparing to sell it… I guess Obama is not planning on moving out of his new house anytime soon. We need to change that.

RalphyBoy on August 10, 2010 at 1:29 PM

This is depressing but a must-see.
Click on ‘Play’ and watch as the colors for each county, which show rates of unemployment, change with the month and year, for the last three and one half years.

Urban Infidel on August 10, 2010 at 1:05 PM

Hey, according to the map, it’s not that bad in Kansas! *ducks*

KS Rex on August 10, 2010 at 1:30 PM

Not personal income,but Rush has a caller on talking
about the closure of,Joint Forces Command!

U.S. Defense Department To Close Major Command, Slash Spending

http://www.rferl.org/content/Gates_Plans_To_Slash_Topheavy_Pentagon_Hierarchy/2123372.html
===================================

canopfor on August 10, 2010 at 1:32 PM

It would appear that some of that money has gone to increase the pay of the government’s workforce during what is supposed to be a period of federal austerity.

That is exactly what happened. 247 got this one WRONG. The public sector beaureaucratic pukes are swilling at the trough while a quarter of teh country is unemployed or underemployed.

And now we learn that:

2. Another 181,000 people miraculously vanished from the labor force last month — even though the population overall grew by 200,000. What is this, a creepy horror movie? In total, about 1.2 million workers have now “vanished” from the official labor force since April. Welcome to Shutter Island.

http://finance.yahoo.com/banking-budgeting/article/110296/investors-ignoring-signals-in-jobless-data?sec=topStories&pos=3&asset=&ccode=

I keep telling you all the Zero regime is cooking the unemployment books and it appears “market watch” finally figured out what I’ve been seeing SINCE LAST YEAR.

dogsoldier on August 10, 2010 at 1:37 PM

Let’s hope Recovery Summer turns to Fall Fall for Dems. The GOP should label Obama’s economy leading into the election as Failure Fall.

BuckeyeSam on August 10, 2010 at 1:39 PM

This is depressing but a must-see.

Click on ‘Play’ and watch as the colors for each county, which show rates of unemployment, change with the month and year, for the last three and one half years.

Urban Infidel on August 10, 2010 at 1:05 PM

Thanks for that link. I’ve emailed it to everyone on my list and asked them to forward it to all of their contacts.

We know how bad it is, but it’s something to remember as the midterms roll around.

Cody1991 on August 10, 2010 at 1:41 PM

I guess this is what they mean when they say the public sector is crowding out the private sector.

txmomof6 on August 10, 2010 at 1:42 PM

San Antonio is growing because the Army, Navy and Air Force are consolidating operations there, not because of any new growth.

For example, all three services will soon train enlisted medical personnel at Fort Sam Houston, rather than at three separate locations.

This actually saves money, because instead of three different support staffs and three different facilities to operate, there’s one.

Also, the Navy moved enlisted out of a high cost area (Great Lakes near Chicago), to a lower cost area in San Antonio.

These plans were all made during the Bush Administration as part of BRAC. Not that I’m any defender of the Obama Administration, but this was all predated Barry.

NoDonkey on August 10, 2010 at 1:46 PM

Well, let’s just say that government work was a growth industry in the Obama administration.

And the serfs have noticed, which is why our public masters are making ads attempting to justify their greedy selves to those who pay their outrageous salaries, benefits and pensions:

New radio ad tout federal workers

Rae on August 10, 2010 at 1:46 PM

Here is a web page on the San Antonio BRAC:

http://www.embracebrac.org/

Again, this has been planned for years. After all, would the Obama “administration” plan to move operations FROM Chicago (Great Lakes) to Texas?

NoDonkey on August 10, 2010 at 1:52 PM

Federal workers earning double their private counterparts

At a time when workers’ pay and benefits have stagnated, federal employees’ average compensation has grown to more than double what private sector workers earn, a USA TODAY analysis finds.

Livid yet?

petefrt on August 10, 2010 at 1:53 PM

Livid yet?

petefrt on August 10, 2010 at 1:53 PM

petefrt: No sh*t,hey,if they want all this Bailout spending,
then how about a 20% percent cut across the board
for Federal Employee cuts!!!!:)

canopfor on August 10, 2010 at 1:58 PM

USA Today banner headline:

Federal workers earning double their private counterparts

http://www.usatoday.com/money/economy/income/2010-08-10-1Afedpay10_ST_N.htm

FTA:

At a time when workers’ pay and benefits have stagnated, federal employees’ average compensation has grown to more than double what private sector workers earn, a USA TODAY analysis finds.
Federal workers have been awarded bigger average pay and benefit increases than private employees for nine years in a row. The compensation gap between federal and private workers has doubled in the past decade.

Federal civil servants earned average pay and benefits of $123,049 in 2009 while private workers made $61,051 in total compensation, according to the Bureau of Economic Analysis. The data are the latest available.

dogsoldier on August 10, 2010 at 2:02 PM

petefrt on August 10, 2010 at 1:53 PM

Beat me to it!

dogsoldier on August 10, 2010 at 2:05 PM

And yet 45% or so of Americans approve of what is happening.
Are Americans stupid? Survey says….Y-E-S!

angryed on August 10, 2010 at 2:06 PM

I work for the DoD and this is true, but for the DoD, this also has to do with the fact that most of the employees have at least a college degree and that it’s an older workforce. Many are retired military with the kind of experience you can’t grow in the private sector.

They support the warfighters in the field and most require
security clearance levels that are not easy to get or to maintain.

I don’t know about the other agencies, but if you support the DoD’s mission, that sort of expertise doesn’t come cheap and certainly won’t come cheaper by hiring contractors.

NoDonkey on August 10, 2010 at 2:18 PM

“Charity begins at home with me!,” -Obooba.

Akzed on August 10, 2010 at 1:02 PM

FIFY

PrettyD_Vicious on August 10, 2010 at 2:56 PM

DC Area Home Prices Up 9 Percent

Are home prices going up in your area?

rockmom on August 10, 2010 at 3:05 PM

Among the 52 MSAs with a population of one million or more, only three had an increase in both net earnings and personal income in 2009 (Washington, D.C.; San Antonio, Texas; and Virginia Beach, Virginia). The biggest gains in compensation in these three MSAs were in the federal government (civilian and military combined). Private sector compensation declined in these three MSAs.

What Obama giveth, Robert Gates taketh away.

Expect a hit to eat San Antonio’s four military bases civilian support personnel’s increase in earnings and personal income. From Fort Sam Houston, Lackland AFB and Randolph AFB, USO San Antonio will likely take the first cuts.

maverick muse on August 10, 2010 at 5:20 PM

They’re stable yet, not falling. But sales are not as rapid this summer, some homes sitting empty on the market when last summer they all sold rapidly before school started. And NEW home prices have fallen considering the “free upgrades” to get sales. The Texas economy brings in the buyers from those relocating from California, etc. Aside from the influx of illegal aliens including the 60,000 newborns of illegal aliens per year in Texas, the relocating US citizens keep sales flowing.

maverick muse on August 10, 2010 at 5:30 PM