While most North Carolinians have dealt with stagnant or declining real incomes, the top 1 percent saw their incomes increase substantially during the current recovery, according to a new report, Income inequality in the US by state, metropolitan area, and county , published by EPI.
The last decade in North Carolina has been the most unequal since the 1930s. On average, the top 1 percent earned almost 18 times more than everyone else in North Carolina in 2013. Report authors Mark Price and Estelle Sommeiller lay out the average incomes of the top 1 percent, the income required to be in the top 1 percent, and the gap between the top 1 percent and the bottom 99 percent in every county and state as well as in 916 metropolitan areas. The authors found that, the top 1 percent captured 85.1 percent of total income growth nationwide from 2009 to 2013, while here in North Carolina all of the new income during that period went to the top 1 percent.
Key findings for North Carolina include:
• The top 1 percent earned 17.7 times more than the bottom 99 percent in North Carolina in 2013.
• The average annual income of the top 1 percent in North Carolina was $745,686 in 2013. To be in the top 1 percent in North Carolina, one would have to earn at least $327,549.
• Inflation-adjusted incomes for the top 1 percent doubled between 1979 and 2009, while the rest of North Carolina only saw incomes increase by 10 percent.