The U.S. Census Bureau on Thursday released its most recent detailed look at America’s people, places and economy.

New state and local statistics on income, poverty and health insurance are available in briefs, detailed tables, data profiles and more. The American Community Survey (ACS) also produces statistics for more than 40 other topics. It follows by two weeks the release of national level data in the Census Bureau’s Current Population Survey Annual Social and Economic Supplement.

The Wall Street Journal (subscription required) analyzed the data and found that millennials, once champions of the hip urban lifestyle, are continuing to leave the cities.

At the state level, 14 states saw an increase in income, and 14 states saw a decrease in poverty rates between 2017 and 2018. During 2018, the percentage of people without health insurance at the time of interview ranged from 2.8% in Massachusetts to 17.7% in Texas. Between 2017 and 2018, the uninsured rate decreased in two and increased in five of the 25 most populous metropolitan areas.


  • Real median household income in the United States increased 0.8% between 2017 and 2018. The 2018 U.S. median household income was $61,937.
  • The 2018 median household income was the highest measured by the ACS.
  • Median household income in 29 states and Puerto Rico was lower than the U.S. median. It was higher than the U.S. median in 18 states and the District of Columbia. Wyoming, North Dakota and Vermont had medians not statistically different from the U.S. median. Visit the interactive graphic to see median household income for all states.
  • Median household income increased in 10 of the 25 most populous metropolitan areas between 2017 and 2018. None of those 25 metropolitan areas experienced a statistically significant decrease.

Income Inequality

  • The Gini index is a standard economic measure of income inequality. A score of 0.0 is perfect equality in income distribution. A score of 1.0 indicates total inequality, where one household has all of the income.
  • The Gini index for the United States in the 2018 ACS (0.485) was significantly higher than the 2017 ACS estimate. Five states (California, Connecticut, Florida, Louisiana and New York), the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico had Gini indices higher than the United States, and 36 states were lower.
  • Most states experienced no statistical change in income inequality. Income inequality increased in nine states: Alabama, Arkansas, California, Kansas, Nebraska, New Hampshire, New Mexico, Texas and Virginia.


  • From 2017 to 2018, the poverty rate declined in 14 states and Puerto Rico. In 2018, the poverty rate increased in only one state: Connecticut.
  • California, Florida, Georgia and North Carolina had declining poverty rates for the fifth year in a row. In three states (Arizona, Illinois and New York), poverty declined for a fourth consecutive year.
  • Seven states had poverty rates less than 10.0%. Visit the interactive graphic to see the 2018 poverty rates for all 50 states and the District of Columbia.
  • In seven of the 25 most populous metropolitan areas, the poverty rate declined between 2017 and 2018. The poverty rate declined for the fourth consecutive year in five of those seven metropolitan areas. None of the most populous metropolitan statistical areas experienced a poverty rate increase in 2018.
  • For the fourth year in a row, the percentage of people in poverty decreased in the three most populous metropolitan areas: New York-Newark-Jersey City, NY-NJ-PA Metro Area; Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA Metro Area; and Chicago-Naperville-Elgin, IL-IN-WI Metro Area.
  • Health Insurance

    • Six states and the District of Columbia had an uninsured rate less than or equal to 5.0%; six states had an uninsured rate of 12.0% or more. The remainder of states had uninsured rates between 5.0 and 11.9% in 2018. Visit the interactive graphic to see where the all the states fall.
    • Between 2017 and 2018, the percentage of people without health insurance coverage at the time of interview decreased in three states. The magnitude of decreases were 1.8 percentage points in Wyoming, 0.5 percentage points in South Carolina, and 0.3 percentage points in New York.
    • Boston had the lowest uninsured rate (2.9%) among the 25 most populous metropolitan areas, while Houston had the highest uninsured rate (18.6%) in 2018.
    • National and state-level health insurance data from the CPS and ACS were released on Sept. 10, 2019.