Wasco County’s Per Capita Personal Income Rose Slightly in 2017

by Dallas Fridley

March 8, 2019

Wasco County’s 2017 per capita personal income ranked 15th among Oregon counties at $42,069. Wasco County lagged the state’s per capita personal income by nearly $6,100. Washington County’s per capita income led the state, at $57,331, while Columbia Gorge neighbor Hood River County ranked fourth at $52,100. On a nominal basis, Wasco County’s total personal income reached $1.1 billion in 2017 with 26,437 residents, while Oregon’s totaled $199.4 billion and its population rose to 4,142,776.
Net earnings by place of residence represented 56 percent of Wasco County’s total personal income in 2017, at $621.7 million. On a per capita basis, Wasco County’s net earnings ranked 15th in Oregon at $23,516, producing a gap of about -$5,700 compared with the state. Only five counties – Washington, Clackamas, Multnomah, Hood River, and Deschutes – held an advantage in net earnings. Per capita incomes in Washington, Clackamas, and Multnomah counties ranked one through three in 2017, Hood River County ranked fourth, and Deschutes County ranked fifth.

Dividends, interest, and rent brought in $202.0 million or about 18 percent of Wasco County’s 2017 personal income total. On a per capita basis, Wasco County ranked 25th among Oregon counties at $7,640, lagging Oregon by close to $2,200. Ten Oregon counties held a per capita advantage over the state, with more than two-thirds lagging. Deschutes County led the state, with $12,221 per capita coming from dividends, interest, and rent. Hood River County’s dividends, interest, and rent ranked second at $12,096 per capita, more than $2,300 above Oregon’s $9,793.
Transfer receipts represented about 26 percent of Wasco County’s personal income total, at $288.5 million. On a per capita basis, Wasco County placed near the middle of the pack, ranking 21st out of 36 counties in 2017 at $10,914. Wasco County exceeded Oregon’s transfer receipts per capita by about $1,800 in 2017. All but eight of Oregon’s counties held a per capita advantage over the state, with transfer receipts in six metro counties (Clackamas, Multnomah, Washington, Benton, Yamhill, and Polk) and two rural (Hood River and Wasco) lagging.

Wasco County’s per capita personal income rose by $568 in 2017, an increase of 1.4 percent. Wasco County’s population rose by 566 residents, an over-the-year increase of 2.2 percent. Between 2012 and 2017, Wasco County’s per capita income ranking ranged from a high of 11th in 2012 to a low of 15th in 2017.

On a nominal basis, Wasco County’s total personal income rose by $38.5 million in 2017, an over-the-year gain of 3.6 percent. Looking at Wasco County’s major income components, net earnings rose by $21.3 million in 2017 (+3.5%); dividends, interest, and rent rose by $8.8 million (+4.5%); and transfer payments increased by $8.5 million (+3.0%).

Since 2007, Wasco County’s total personal income grew by $355.5 million or about 47 percent, just below Oregon’s 49 percent increase ($65.6 billion). Adjustments to earnings for residence increased moderately over the decade. In 2007, net earnings in Wasco County included a residency adjustment or outflow of -$0.5 million, just -$21 on a per capita basis. By 2017, the outflow of earnings from Wasco County rose to -$5.5 million or -$208 per capita.

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