Monday, October 31, 2016

Texas is not a low-wage state

In yesterday's San-Antonio Express-News, O. Ricardo Pimentel called Texas a low-wage state. Here is the link

Pimentel article.

This is not true when the cost of living is factored in. Then Texas does very well. Poverty in Texas is also lower than California when cost of living is taken into account. Below is a link from a Time Magazine article from 2013 on this. It was by  economist Tyler Cowen.

Time Article.
"The lower house prices, along with a generally low cost of living--helped along by cheap labor, cheap produce and cheap gas (currently about $3 a gallon)--really matter when it comes to quality of life. For instance, the federal government calculated the Texas poverty rate as 18.4% for 2010 and that of California as about 16%. That may sound bad for Texas, but once adjustments are made for the different costs of living across the two states, as the federal government does in its Supplemental Poverty Measure, Texas' poverty rate drops to 16.5% and California's spikes to a dismal 22.4%. Not surprisingly, it is the lower-income residents who are most likely to leave California.

On the flip side, Texas has a higher per capita income than California, adjusted for cost of living, and nearly catches up with New York by the same measure. Once you factor in state and local taxes, Texas pulls ahead of New York--by a wide margin. The website MoneyRates ranks states on the basis of average income, adjusting for tax rates and cost of living; once those factors are accounted for, Texas has the third highest average income (after Virginia and Washington State), while New York ranks 36th."

Texas (4.8%) is still below the national average unemployment rate of 5.0%

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