Study: Connecticut Tops List of States With High Earners While Mississippi Posts Most Low Earners

FOSTER CITY, Calif., March 30, 2015 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- A new study by personal finance website finds that when it comes to taxpayers with incomes of $1 million or more, Connecticut leads the country with 63 such high earners per 10,000 taxpayers, or 0.63 percent of its tax-paying population. On the other end of the scale, West Virginia posted the highest proportion of low earners – those earning less than $25,000 annually – with nearly half its population of taxpayers (48.6 percent) falling into this category.

The study, which examined 2013 tax returns across all 50 U.S. states and the District of Columbia for its income data, found that many states varied widely from the national averages for taxpayers with incomes of $1 million or more (0.25 percent of the group) and taxpayers with incomes of less than $25,000 (41 percent of the group).

Richard Barrington, CFA, senior financial analyst for and author of the study, says that it should come as no surprise that such concentrations of wealth and poverty exist in various parts of the country.

"Economics tend to be contagious," says Barrington. "Financial success tends to catch on in some areas, while hardship catches on in others."

Beyond the state divides, conditions seemed similar in some regions of the country. For instance, four of the top five states for high earners per capita are in the Northeast. Similarly, eight of the top 10 states for high proportions of low earners are clustered in the Southeast.

Florida was the only state to make the top 10 for both its proportion of high earners (0.31 percent) and its proportion of low earners (46.5 percent). Barrington says that makes Florida far different from many of the other states on the top-10 lists. For instance, the only state to post a higher proportion of poor people than Florida, Mississippi, was nowhere near the top 10 for its proportion of high earners. It stood second-to-last in that category, ahead of only West Virginia.

"Unfortunately, this makes Florida the poster child for income inequality," says Barrington. "Its earners are unusually heavily weighted at both ends, high and low. In most cases, we found that a concentration of high earners seemed to lift the state's income structure as a whole, because they tended not to be high on the list of low earners. Florida is different."

Here are the top 10 states for high earners per capita in the MoneyRates study:

  1. Connecticut
  2. District of Columbia
  3. New York
  4. Massachusetts
  5. New Jersey
  6. North Dakota
  7. California
  8. Texas
  9. Florida
  10. Illinois

Here are the top 10 states for low earners per capita in the MoneyRates study:

  1. Mississippi
  2. Florida
  3. New Mexico
  4. Arkansas
  5. Georgia
  6. Alabama
  7. South Carolina
  8. Tennessee
  9. Louisiana
  10. Michigan

For more details on the study, please see

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CONTACT: Alex H. Bryant 212-863-4753 abryant@quinstreet.comSource:QuinStreet