The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA) publishes farm and nonfarm earnings data for state and local areas. The data includes estimates of personal income and earnings by industry. The chart below shows the annual percentage change in farm earnings during the 2005-2011 period. Comparative data is included for the Plains Region (Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota and South Dakota).
For the 2010-2011 period, South Dakota achieved the highest growth rate at 102.3 percent. Iowa attained the next highest growth rate in the Plains Region at 97.1 percent. Farm earnings data is comprised of the net income of sole proprietors, partners and hired laborers arising directly from the current production of agricultural commodities, either livestock or crops. A hefty factor contributing to the growth rate for South Dakota is that the farm proprietors' income has increased 110.4 percent during the 2010-2011 period.
Growth in Farm and Nonfarm Earnings
In all three regions, farm earnings reflected significant growth from 2010 to 2011, while nonfarm earnings provided more modest growth. Nonfarm earnings is the sum of wage and salary disbursements, supplements to wages and salaries, and proprietors' income for all industries, excluding farm.