Connecticut Beats Out Alaska as State With Highest Income

Associated Press

Residents of Connecticut enjoyed the highest average income per person of any state in the country in 1986, displacing Alaska for the No. 1 spot for the first time in 14 years, the government reported today.

The Commerce Department said residents of Connecticut earned an average of $19,208, an increase of 6.1% over 1985.

This gain far surpassed the nationwide income average gain of 4.3%. Nationally, the average income was $14,461 in 1986, compared to $13,867 in 1985.

New Jersey ranked second among the states with average per-capita income of $18,284 in 1986. By contrast, Mississippi, the perennial last-place finisher, was last again with a per-capita income of $9,552.

Alaska, which had held the No. 1 earning spot since 1973 when it displaced Connecticut, fell to third place with per-capita income of $17,744 last year, a decline of 2.2% from 1985.

In all, Alaska and six other states, located primarily in energy regions, had income performances last year which failed to keep up with the 2.1% rise in inflation.

The smallest percentage gains in per-capita income were generally in the Rocky Mountain region and the Southwest.

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