Most Americans Hit "Peak Income" More Than 15 Years Ago

Tyler Durden's picture

After adjusting for inflation, the majority of Americans are worse off today than they were decades ago. The map below shows that median household income actually peaked at least 15 years ago in 81% of U.S. counties.


Courtesy of: Visual Capitalist


This visualization of household incomes is from an interactive map created by the Washington Post that allows users to zoom in on individual counties to see how income has changed over the years.

Some of the more interesting revelations include:

  • Income peaked one year ago for many of the counties that are a part of the shale boom. This includes much of North and South Dakota, as well as parts of Texas, Nebraska, and Oklahoma. Income in Washington, D.C. and neighboring Arlington County also peaked then.
  • In 1999, a total of 1,623 counties had their households reach peak income. The majority of these counties are in the Midwest and Southeast.
  • The most southern part of California and parts of New England both peaked around 25 years ago.
  • Many states along the Rocky Mountains such as Wyoming and Montana had counties that peaked roughly 35 years ago.
  • Household income peaked in upstate New York, the northern tip of California, and southern Nevada at the same time that humans were first landing on the moon in 1969.

But we have one simple question...After reading all of the above, what is it exactly The Fed does?


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stant's picture

Are you better off than you were 7 yrs ago?

Bill of Rights's picture

Level funded...notably the assholes have gotten a lot worse and people are fucken ignorant and lack commonsense more than ever.

RafterManFMJ's picture

My income peaked in 2000, and it's been downhill ever since.

I'll be lucky to make 65% of my 2000 peak this year. Fuck.

Majestic12's picture

"Peak Income"

Oh wait, are they talking about "reported" income?

"No man is an island"...but rich men live, own and bank there.

Vincent.Vega's picture

> In 1999, a total of 1,623 counties had their households reach peak income. The majority of these counties are in the Midwest and Southeast.

> Oh wait, are they talking about "reported" income?

Yes, the Great Grab of '90s, by the Western Orcs, peaked in 1999 -- when nothing was left in the former Eastern Bloc, just the ruins and prostitutes.

It's a history of the systemic parasitism. Money and resources gorged, gobbled and shitted out.

LowerSlowerDelaware_LSD's picture
LowerSlowerDelaware_LSD (not verified) Vincent.Vega Nov 20, 2015 10:31 PM

I thank God I'm not part of the "most" but things can reverse at any moment.  Especially with a government hell bent on strangling anyone who wants to be productive, not dependent on the government.

Average income has been declining slowly over the years.  If  they count retirement income, with all of the people retiring, income should be dropping dramatically.

Stuck on Zero's picture

Is that peak income in the chart after taxes? It sure makes a difference.

duo's picture

I don't know ANYONE outside of banking/finance/real estate that is making more than they did in 2000.

Kirk2NCC1701's picture

Ditto.  2001-2002.

Now same job pays 75% of the peak*, with house prices and COL much higher. 

* Thanks to H1B visas from India and China driving down engineering prices.  Hence, ask me if I really give a shite about the BRICS, as labor arbitrage is rising on the pay scale.

FreeShitter's picture

The sheeple are at peak dumb fuckery!

junction's picture

That peak in 1999 was wrecked by the bust and then the World Trade Center bombing.  A one-two punch the economy could never recover from thanks to the repeal of the Glass Steagall Act of 1934, a repeal signed by cokehead pedophile Bill Clinton.  Degenerates and Satanists now rule America, just as in the UK.  The anti-Christ Obama administration has targeted Chaldean Christians fleeing genocide in Iraq for special treatment.  No surprise there.  Nor that Obama is the best friend thieving banksters or jihadist murderers ever had, the scum trying to wreck America totally.

ussa's picture

High correlation to China and WTO. Tee made agreements gutted American jobs. Those who have and will vote for them are traitors to every citizen.

milking institute's picture

my best years where 2000 to 2007,people forgot how good the economy really was!  i remember the 80s when the media where full of stories how Reagan created the great homeless epidemic,it was all lies,the US economy was booming. now the homeless population is 10 fold and everywhere. silence in the media since we have to protect the lowlifes stinking up the white house......with the hildebeast looming on the horizon that philippine island looks more appealing every day!

Not My Real Name's picture

00 - 07 was booming, but it was all a lie too, the fire stoked by a housing boom supported by artificially low interest rates.

stant's picture

Are you better off than you were 7 yrs ago?

kappal_toba_dhurr_ne_thook's picture

YES!!!!   Because we left USA once and for all a few years back, that's why,  If not we would be suffering all the more.


I am making jerking off the dog to feed the cat income compared to 15 years ago.

Fuck the Fed, and everyone who rode in with it.

Bill of Rights's picture

least we forget peak idiocy, I mean can people really get any dumber?

One more year of Obama , I'm sure nothing will surprise...

Majestic12's picture

"Peak Income"

Oh wait, are they talking about "reported" income?

"No man is an island"...but rich men live, own and bank there.

kappal_toba_dhurr_ne_thook's picture

No surprises here, deekras (dears).  We lived there for 20 yeares from 1991 to 2011, and desoite evryone telling us that things were "greaaaaat" we saw first hand how things  were going from bad to worse.

Trouble is that Americanos are very good at media deception, and so they have the whoel world believing that things in USA really are great when in fact they are fast approaching third world standards. 

Save refugees, if you are contemplating a move to USA I say DON'T!  Please, please, please conider another country.


August's picture

You mean, to like a society with a future?

Yen Cross's picture

  When are Americans going to hit peak, " Fractional Reserve Lending?"


Proctologist's picture

Probably when the Federal Reserve is forced to issue million dollar notes due to hyper inflation created by their idiocy.

It be nice if they would put Bernanke's picture on them .

But It could be a while.

Yen Cross's picture

 Brown Probe , with thermite oil pan. :-D

Vincent.Vega's picture

> The '90s were a prosperous time for most of the nation

Well, here is one hint: Gorbi, Perestroika... inflow of cash, tons and tons of war reparations from the country which lost the Cold War and still is a colony:


[...] It has been celebrated in Russia annually since 1992.[1] The First Congress of People's Deputies of the Russian Federation adopted the Declaration of State Sovereignty of the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic on June 12, 1990. [...]


George Herbert Walker Bush (born June 12, 1924) is an American politician who served as the 41st President of the United States from 1989 to 1993 [...]

Joe Camel's picture

Peak income for most of the USA occurred right after many years of Beavis and Butthead on TV, since then its been down hill. Coincidence? I thnk not.

lester1's picture

The American decline is due to those horrible "free trade" deals !!

vollderlerby's picture

The hildebeast wrote 2003 ""Creating a free trade zone in North America — the largest free trade zone in the world — would expand U.S. exports, create jobs and ensure that our economy was reaping the benefits, not the burdens, of globalization. Although unpopular with labor unions, expanding trade opportunities was an important administration goal."

2004: "I think that we have to enforce the trade rules that are inherent" in NAFTA. "I think on balance NAFTA has been good for New York and America, ..."

She changed her talking points once she started running for president.

We are so fucked


dizzyfingers's picture Ross Perot said it would be.

vollderlerby's picture

Perot should get the Nobel Prize for Economics for that one.  Everyone else was waving their little pomp pomps around when they pulled the rug from under us - only Perot knew and had the balls to say what was going to happen.

Up next:  The Nafta cheering Hildebeast.  We better get to the gym for cardio and working on our biceps to keep those handjob skills on the up and up. When the Hildebeast is done with us we'll need those skills to put food on the table.


The wealth transfer needs to be transferred back into my pockets, and bank account, plain, and simple. Everything else is just smoke n' mirrors rhetoric.

What happened to the Z/H comment window editor?

Francis Marx's picture

If people look, when the soviet union fell, thats when they didnt need  to pay people decent wages here anymore. Wages slowly started to stall after 1991

I Write Code's picture

Mine sure did, adjusted for inflation, or even not adjusted for inflation.

FreeShitter's picture

The peak for me fun/happy wise was 1994, peak income was 2005....for the past 10 years its been a socialeconomic nightmare.

Crocodile's picture

We are all shocked; good luck.

dadcss's picture

Purchasing power 1st started to become unstable when Nixon cut the gold/dollar tie.

Then Corporations needed to cut deals with Washington to off shore jobs to keep profits up.

Things went along for another 20 years give or take until our economy was pretty much changed into a service economy living off cheap imports.

Now its a "kicking the can down the road" economy and its just about out of road.

Don't worry about the illegals in our counrty, they will go back to their home countries once they find out Uncle Sam wants his share of that wade of cash they carry around with them.

Just got back from Cablas, the line for gun purchases was very long. People know whats coming.......

Crocodile's picture

One word: OBUMMER

Crocodile's picture

If we followed God's plan, the wife would be home with the children raising them up in the nurture and admonishment of the Lord and the husband would be the "bread-winner".  The family would thrive and jobs would be plentiful for the workforce would be shrunk to put wage pressure on all areas and a person could make a living on one income.  The next generation would be trained by both parents and particularly the MOTHER; a job worthy of all honor.  A good woman makes the house a home and any woman who thinks she can do it all is fooling only herself, not her children nor her husband.


But people believe they know better than God and people love the things that Satan offers, the lust of the eyes and the lust of the flesh; that is what he offers and what most boys and girls desire.  Men and women choose Christ and His ways in recognition that it provides the best protection for children, marriage and the family and by extension, the society.

gregga777's picture

The one AND only function of the Fed is to transfer Main Street wealth—the product of much blood, sweat and toil—to the Wall Street parasites. The President and Congress are the two-bit hucksters who oversee the wealth transfer to Wall Street.

Minburi's picture

My 140K earned in '13 felt like a lot less than my 80K earned back in '95.

Raging Debate's picture

I make the same amount. That requiree going from a small business to a micro business where I now do 90% of the work. That and my tax burden is less. Hasn't been a picnic. The middle man is every form of business has had its way for a long time, now the sharks are extra hungry. Unsurprisingly, production is dropping as when there is so few ways to ge lt ahead why bother?

I got lucky, was born with a mind that loved research especially about human behavior. Also had hundreds of hours to study all this. But dishonest people abound and the rest no longer care and spacing out. Makes it hard to do business. 

 Doing more manual work to become more independent like working on my car. Next year, electricity generation using simple tools as a hobby and hopefully never a necessity. For my biz already learned databases and coding as usually I am just a business manager/owner. 

 Lawlessness is just disgusting.