Oklahoma has experienced among the best personal income growth of any state in the past year, based on estimates issued Tuesday by the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis.
The state's 1.2 percent growth in personal income in the second quarter was the seventh-best rate among all states. Chad Wilkerson, Federal Reserve economist in Oklahoma City, said only one state — oil-rich North Dakota — has topped Oklahoma in personal income growth for each of the past four quarters.
“We've had about the most consistent growth in personal income of any state, around 1 percent per quarter,” Wilkerson said.
The bureau estimated Oklahoma's total personal income at $148.2 billion in the April through the June period, compared with $146.5 billion in the previous quarter.
Census figures released last week show Oklahoma's median household income of about $43,000 ranks 42nd among states. The state's median household income, a different measure than personal income, remained flat from 2010 to 2011 while the nation's median income fell about 1.3 percent.
Wilkerson said revision by the Bureau of Economic Analysis to previous personal income numbers made the economy in Oklahoma look stronger.
“With the revisions they did for the last three years, it's even better news than we knew about the past,” he said.
In 2011, for instance, Oklahoma's personal income number was revised upward by $1.5 billion, or 1.1 percent. Among all states, 2011 income was revised downward by $31.8 billion, or 0.2 percent.
In the second quarter, Oklahoma was one of 10 states that experienced accelerated growth when compared to the previous quarter. Growth slowed in 39 states and the District of Columbia, and was unchanged in Nevada.
Personal income growth ranged from 2.1 percent in North Dakota to 0.4 percent in New Mexico. Inflation, as measured by the national price index for personal consumption expenditures, slowed to 0.2 percent in the second quarter from 0.6 percent in the first quarter, the bureau said.
The income numbers reflect a robust energy sector driving the economies of Oklahoma and North Dakota, Wilkerson said.
“Energy has continued to grow in terms of income, and that spills over quickly into durable manufacturing, wholesale trade, and transportation,” he said.
Federal government and military incomes were flat in the second quarter among Oklahomans while state and local government recorded a small gain.
Oklahoma farm income dipped slightly, which Wilkerson attributed in part to drought conditions.
The Bureau of Economic Analysis defines personal income as that received by all persons from all sources, which includes the sum of net earnings by place of residence, property income, and personal current transfer receipts. It is measured before deduction of income taxes and other personal taxes.