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North Dakota Personal Transfer Receipts Increase But Are a Smaller Proportion of Income

The significant shift in the relationship of transfer payments to total personal income between North Dakota and the U.S. reflects changing economic circumstances.

Personal transfer receipts accounted for 14.7 percent of all personal income received by North Dakota residents in 2008 (latest available data).

This month’s “Economic Brief,” a monthly publication from the North Dakota State Data Center at North Dakota State University, focuses on current personal transfer receipts. These are payments by government and businesses for individuals and nonprofit institutions serving individuals.

For the first time since the early 1980s, this proportion has dropped below the national average, which was 15.5 percent in 2008. However, North Dakotans received $3.72 billion in personal transfer receipts in 2008, a 7.2 percent increase from $3.47 billion in 2007.

The significant shift in the relationship of transfer payments to total personal income between North Dakota and the U.S. reflects changing economic circumstances. From 2007 to 2008, total personal income in North Dakota grew by 9.3 percent, compared with 2.9 percent for the nation.

In contrast, total transfer payments in North Dakota grew by 6.5 percent, compared with 9.2 percent for the U.S.

“This combination of greater growth in personal income and a smaller increase in transfer payments in North Dakota relative to the nation results in the smaller proportion that transfer payments represent of total personal income,” says Richard Rathge, State Data Center director.

The largest category of transfer receipts for North Dakota residents in 2008 consisted of retirement and disability insurance benefits ($1.54 billion). This was followed by medical benefits ($1.51 billion) and income maintenance benefits ($254 million).

The remaining $445 million of transfer payments to North Dakotans included such payments as unemployment insurance compensation, veterans benefits, education and training assistance, Bureau of Indian Affairs payments, disaster relief, and personal injury and educational assistance payments.

Personal transfer receipts as a proportion of total personal income vary from state to state. Nationally, personal transfer receipts were 15.3 percent of total personal income in 2008.

Five states showed personal transfer receipts accounting for at least one-fifth of all personal income received by residents. These states were West Virginia, Mississippi, Arkansas, Kentucky, and Maine (25.1 percent, 23.1 percent, 21.3 percent, 21.1 percent and 20.3 percent, respectively). Colorado had the smallest proportion at 10.4 percent.


NDSU Agriculture Communication

Source:Richard Rathge, (701) 231-8621, richard.rathge@ndsu.edu
Editor:Rich Mattern, (701) 231-6136, richard.mattern@ndsu.edu
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(0518 Economic Brief.pdf - 377.22 Kb)
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