Bringing home the bacon

Austin banks one of country's biggest jumps in personal income

Austin banks one of country's biggest jumps in personal income

Zilker Park Austin skyline at sunset
It may not seem like it, but your paycheck is growing. RoschetzkyIstockPhoto/Getty

With housing and other costs continuing to climb in the Austin metro area, it might not feel like your bank account is growing. But the region actually notched one of the country’s biggest jumps in personal income from 2016 to 2018.

data analysis published November 19 by the Bloomberg news service shows personal income in the Austin metro area rose 6.1 percent on a per-person basis during the two-year period. That compares with a 4.9 percent increase across all U.S. metro areas.

For 2016 to 2018, Austin ranked 15th for income growth among U.S. cities, according to Bloomberg. By comparison, the San Jose, California, metro area nabbed the No. 6 spot (7.9 percent), followed by the San Francisco area at No. 7 (7 percent).

Last year, per-capita personal income in the Austin area stood at $58,773, slightly above the personal income total of $54,446 per person across all U.S. metro areas.

In December 2018, the Austin Chamber of Commerce attributed the spike in the region’s personal income to robust population growth and job growth.

Bloomberg’s study relied on fresh data from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis about personal income, which includes wages, investment dividends and interest, and government benefits like Social Security.

In total, Texas took four of the top 20 spots. West Texas metro area of Midland, which has experienced an oil-and-gas boom in recent years, notched the most growth in personal income among from 2016 to 2018 — an eye-popping 28 percent. Last year, personal income in the Midland area soared to $122,247 per person.

The neighboring metro area of Odessa landed at No. 3, with income growth of 12 percent ($47,271 in 2018). The Tyler metro area in East Texas, also a hub for oil-and-gas activity, ranked fourth at 9.3 percent ($55,229 in 2018).

No other Texas metro area appeared in the top 20 for income growth.