Not that you need any more data on the improved economic prospects of North Dakota, but this chart drives home the point.
Real per capita income in North Dakota soared in 2012 by 12. 7 percent, according to new data released by the Bureau of Economic Analysis. Real income in Indiana grew at an above-average pace too, but as you can see, North Dakota is in a class by itself.
Real personal income is calculated by the Department of Commerce to account for the prices of things in given states. For instance, prices are lower in North Dakota than they are in Washington D.C., so the same amount of nominal income is higher in real terms in North Dakota.
Here are the price parities by state. 100 is the overall national price level.
Minnesota’s growth in real personal income in 2012 was just below the national average of 2.3 percent, at 2.2 percent. Per capita, it was 1.6 percent.
Even though nominal personal income per capita in Minnesota is higher than in any state in the Midwest outside of North Dakota (and 11th in the nation), apparently because prices are higher here real personal income is lower than in South Dakota, Nebraska and Iowa.
The data does not speak to income inequality, unfortunately. Per capita income figures have that limitation. For a close read of the methodology and definitions, go to the BEA website here.