Lincoln, Union, Stanley and Hanson counties posted median incomes above $60,000 in 2014.
Lincoln, Union, Stanley and Hanson counties posted median incomes above $60,000 in 2014.
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Apr 11, 2016

SD's Metro Areas Post Much Higher Incomes Than Rural Folks

While one South Dakota county (Hanson) smack in the middle of farm country posted among the state's highest median household incomes in 2014, overall, rural residents took in about $12,000 less income than did South Dakotans living in metropolitan areas. 

The good news for South Dakotans living in non-metropolitan areas is that their median household income has been growing faster than that of metropolitan and micropolitan areas. Still, the 2014 median household income for non-metro parts of the state was $44,208 compared to $56,591 for metro areas and $51,257 for micropolitan areas. 

In 2007, before the Great Recession hit, those incomes were $41,522 in non-metro areas, $56,568 in metro areas and $49,293 in micropolitan areas. (All figures are inflation-adjusted to 2014). 

Among South Dakota's metropolitan and micropolitan areas, the Sioux Falls and Pierre areas lead for income while the Vermillion area ranks last. Here's a look at incomes in those areas averaged from 2010 to 2014: 

  • Pierre micro, $58,027 (Hughes, Stanley and Sully counties)
  • Sioux Falls metro, $57,356 (Lincoln, McCook, Minnehaha and Turner counties)
  • Aberdeen micro, $52,641 (Brown and Edmunds counties)
  • Mitchell micro, $51,192 (Davison and Hanson counties)
  • Rapid City metro, $51,041 (Custer, Meade and Pennington counties) 
  • Yankton micro, $50,044 (Yankton County) 
  • Sioux City metro, $49,843 (Union County [SD], Dakota and Dixon counties [NE], Plymouth and Woodbury counties [IA])
  • Brookings micro, $48,406 (Brookings County) 
  • Watertown micro, $47,891 (Codington County) 
  • Spearfish micro, $44,267 (Lawrence County)
  • Huron micro, $44,258 (Beadle County)
  • Vermillion micro, $36,627 (Clay County)

Consistently, counties surrounding the state's largest city of Sioux Falls rank high for income while those on the state's nine American Indian reservations rank low. Here's a look at the top and bottom five counties for median household income in 2014: 

Top 5 Income Counties 2014
  • Lincoln, $79,857
  • Union, $72,041
  • Stanley, $67,172
  • Hanson, $61,945
  • Sully, $59,879
Bottom 5 Income Counties 2014
  • Jackson, $31,922
  • Corson, $31,420
  • Todd, $27,481
  • Oglala Lakota, $27,244
  • Buffalo, $21,658

Among the state's nine Indian reservations, the Lake Traverse reservation in northeastern South Dakota posted the highest income for 2010-2014 while the Rosebud reservation in south-central South Dakota posted the lowest. 

  • Lake Traverse reservation, $46,717
  • Flandreau reservation, $40,833
  • Lower Brule reservation, $37,763
  • Yankton reservation, $36,278
  • Standing Rock reservation, $35,278
  • Cheyenne River reservation, $33,207
  • Crow Creek reservation, $30,344
  • Pine Ridge reservation, $30,060
  • Rosebud reservation, $28,514


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