BTC BRIEF: The Wealth of Cities - Urban Families Richer, Less Apt to be Poor, But Racial Disparities Persist

Families living in North Carolina’s urban areas, regardless of race, were richer and less likely to be poor than their rural counterparts in 2005. Two-thirds of urban counties had median family incomes above the statewide figure of $49,339/year. In contrast, 82 percent of large rural counties had median incomes below that level. Urban families also were less likely to live in poverty than rural families or Tar Heel families in general.

These findings come from the recently released American Community Survey (ACS), conducted by the U.S. Census Bureau. The ACS collects annual demographic, socio-economic and housing data for the nation, states and counties/ cities with more than 65,000 residents. Statistics are available for 37 North Carolina counties. Of these counties, 15 are urban and 22 are rural, as defined by the N.C. Rural Center.

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