Median Household Purchasing Power for the 50 States and DC

Last week we posted an update on the median household income for the 50 states and DC based on the Current Population Survey, a joint undertaking of the Census Bureau and Bureau of Labor Statistics, which includes annual data from 1984 to 2015. Let's now look at the actual purchasing power of those median incomes. For this adjustment we're using the "C2ER Cost of Living Index" produced by C2ER, the Council for Community and Economic Research.

The median US household income in 2015 was $56,516 (more here). The median incomes by state, rounded to the nearest $100, ranged from the $75.7K high in New Hampshire to the $40.0K low in Mississippi. Here is an alphabetically sorted table showing the median data for the 50 states and DC along with the purchasing power of those dollars based on the C2ER Cost of Living Index.

The alphabetical listing above makes it easy to find individual states, but for some additional insight, let's sort the table by the purchasing power column. A quick look at the table below shows the huge spread between $72.2K in Minnesota and $43.2K in New York. We've calculated the difference between the actual median and its purchasing power in the column labeled "Difference".