The graphic representation below, of what a $100-dollar bill can really buy you in each state, shows where you can get the most out of your money.
The Tax Foundation, a non-profit, created a color-coded map of the U.S., illustrating how much $100 is really worth in each state. The organization drew the map using data from The Bureau of Economic Analysis and used national averages to compare just how much you can truly buy with your income.
So which states give you the most bang for your buck?
Mississippi comes in at the top of the list, where $100 is really worth about $115.21. It’s followed closely by Arkansas ($114.29), South Dakota ($114.21), Alabama ($114.03) and West Virginia ($113.12). Washington D.C. comes in very last on the list, with $100 only getting you about the equivalent of $84.96. Hawaii comes in second at $86.06, followed by New York ($86.73), New Jersey ($87.34) and California ($89.05).
Many argue that these numbers are just a result of some states’ high costs of living. While the organization admits there’s a common relationship between the two, the real driving force behind the skew of numbers is what’s called “regional price parity.” The difference in the price of goods in each state can mean a lot when it comes to what each state’s average income can really buy.
The graph above shows the difference in average income for California and Nebraska before and after taking regional price parity into account. Although the two have almost the same income on average, Nebraskans can buy more with their income on average than Californians when you factor in the local costs of goods.
In general, you can buy more with your income if you live in a land-locked state with a lower population. Although it isn’t wise to let this info sway you to move to another state ASAP, it’s a helpful look into just how different each state’s economy is and how it really affects its residents. Happy shopping!