Connecticut Leads the Nation in Multiple Measures of Income Inequality: 2007

Back • Publication Date: February 19th, 2009

Authors: Joachim Hero, M.P.H.

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The most recent Census data show that Connecticut and New York lead the nation in household income inequality, followed by Mississippi, Louisiana, Texas, and Tennessee. Connecticut’s highest-income households — the top 5% — received a quarter (24.9%) of all the income in the state. The poorest 20% of the households in Connecticut received only 3.3% of all income in the state.

In addition to having the second-most unequal household income distribution in the country, Connecticut, out of all US states, has had the greatest growth in household income inequality over the past several decades. Income inequality has grown in all but one of Connecticut’s eight counties. Research shows that income inequality has negative impacts on health, opportunity, and quality of life. Children who grow up in poverty have poorer health, higher rates of learning disabilities and developmental delays, and poorer school achievement.