by Hans D. Stroo on September 29, 2014

Washington households still haven’t recovered from the Great Recession. Between 2008 and 2013, Washington’s real median household income declined 6.4 percent statewide. As measured in 2013 dollars, the median Washington household made $4,025 dollars less in 2013 than in 2008. Though other areas were harder hit, King County real household income declined about 3 percent. Real household income fell over $8 thousands (15.2 percent) in Garfield County.

Manipulate the data viz story below by 1) clicking the story points (the boxes above the map) and 2) hovering over the visualizations to read the tool tips.

Income growth was strongest in the Benton-Franklin county area: driven by high-performance in the Tri-City area: Kennewick, Pasco, and Richland. The Tri-Cities was one of only three metropolitan areas in the country to be recognized for positive job growth in each month of 2009 and 2010. Via the Tri-City Development Council: the area’s economy is driven by “agriculture, bio and high technology, manufacturing, service industry, and government. Major employers include Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Lockheed Martin, Bechtel National, CH2M Hill, ConAgra Foods Lab Weston,, Tyson Fresh Meats, URS Corporation, and Ferguson Enterprises.”

There is a silver lining. In the recently released 2013 numbers, after 5 straight underwater years of statewide decline, real median household income began to rise again – 2.3 percent since 2012.

  • Data was sourced from the Washington State Office of Financial Management. The estimates were last updated March, 2014.
  • 2008 dollars were translated into 2013 dollars using the CPI Inflation Calculator provided by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.
  • Data on distribution of income sourced from INCOME IN THE PAST 12 MONTHS (IN 2013 INFLATION-ADJUSTED DOLLARS), 2013 American Community Survey 1-Year Estimates. Located using the Census Bureau’s American FactFinder.