On the back of strong growth in farm income, South Dakota residents saw their personal income grow by 7.4 percent (on an annual basis) in the fourth quarter of last year. That was the fastest rate of any state.
That's a dramatic turnaround from 2006, but also indicative of the outsized role that farming continues to have in the state. That year, persistent drought through much of the state held personal income growth to 2.6 percent, despite income growth of about 5 percent in 2006 for the state's two metropolitan counties, Minnehaha and Pennington, and almost 10 percent growth in Lincoln County, a fast-growing suburban county near Sioux Falls.
Since 2003, South Dakota's personal income growth is higher than that of any Midwest or Great Plains state, and about 10 percent above the national average.
—Ronald A. Wirtz