Yesterday, the Department of Commerce released data on personal income growth by metro area for 2007, and Massachusetts generally fared better than the US as a whole. Nationally, the annual growth in income fell from 6.7% in 2006 to 6.2% last year, but in Boston it rose from 6.7% to 6.8%.
The fastest growing metro areas were Gulfport, Mississippi (up 18.8%); New Orleans; and Pascagoula, Mississippi -- all "boosted by federal payments to rebuild residences destroyed or damaged by Hurricane Katrina in 2005." There were also big jumps in metro areas where the oil and natural gas industries are strong, including Odessa and Midland, both in Texas. Bridgeport, Connecticut, had the biggest increase in the Northeast.
The 20 slowest-growing places were all in Great Lakes states, with Saginaw, Michigan, coming in last among the 363 metro areas; it went up by only 1.3%
Among New England metro areas (all listed below), Boston, Bridgeport, Hartford, and Worcester stood out as having growth rates that were both above the national average and above 2006 rates. Burlington, Manchester, and Pittsfield were the only ones that logged below-average growth rates that also represented a slowdown from 2006.
NATIONAL: $38,632, up 6.2%
Bangor, ME: $30,486 (261st of 363 metro areas), up 4.5%*
Barnstable, MA: $48,868 (15th), up 6.0%*
Boston, MA: $53,763 (7th), up 6.8%*
Bridgeport/Stamford, CT: $80,192 (1st), up 8.1%*
Burlington, VT: $38,951 (71st), up 5.0%
Hartford, CT: $47,641 (17th), up 6.6%*
Lewiston, ME: $32,139 (218th), up 5.9%*
Manchester, NH: $43,518 (35th), up 5.5%
New Haven, CT: $43,820 (33rd), up 6.0%*
Norwich, CT: $42,586 (38th), up 5.3%*
Pittsfield, MA: $40,898 (52nd), up 5.1%
Portland, ME: $38,889 (74th), up 5.4%*
Providence, RI: $38,868 (75th), up 4.7%*
Springfield, MA: $35,617 (125th), up 5.2%*
Worcester, MA: $41,077 (49th), up 6.3%*
*Increase in growth rate compared with 2006.