These Cities Will be the Poorest Counties of Pennsylvania in 2024

The amount of money people are earning is increasing quickly in the United States. The U.S. Census Bureau estimates that the average income for households in the country was around $75,000 in 2022, which is an increase from about $69,700 in 2021. The 7.2% increase was the biggest increase compared to the previous year since at least the mid-1990s.

The average American household is earning more money than in the past, but these increased incomes have not been keeping up with inflation. In 2022, the average rate of inflation reached a 40-year high of 8%, which is four times higher than the Federal Reserve’s target rate of 2%. Considering the increasing cost of living, the amount of money people actually have to spend in the U.S. decreased by almost 5% from 2019 to 2022.

While everyone has been affected by rising prices, Americans with lower incomes have been hit the hardest. When prices are going up, wealthy Americans can spend less and lessen the effect of the increasing costs. On the other hand, Americans with lower incomes, who have to spend a bigger portion of their money on essential things like food, housing, and gas, are unable to do so.

The median household income in Pennsylvania is $73,170. However, in many areas of the state, the average household income is much lower than the median income for the entire state.

The 35 poorest counties in Pennsylvania were identified by 24/7 Wall St. using data from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2022 American Community Survey, which includes information from the past five years. The counties in the state are ranked based on the average income of households. The population, poverty, and unemployment data are estimates for a five-year period from the 2022 ACS.

The Poorest Counties in Pennsylvania for 2024

Cameron County

  • Median household income: $46,186
  • Poverty rate: 15.0%
  • 5-yr. avg. unemployment rate: 7.1%
  • Population: 4,536

Forest County

  • Median household income: $46,188
  • Poverty rate: 19.2%
  • 5-yr. avg. unemployment rate: 4.3%
  • Population: 6,959

Fayette County

  • Median household income: $55,579
  • Poverty rate: 16.2%
  • 5-yr. avg. unemployment rate: 7.2%
  • Population: 128,417

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Northumberland County

  • Median household income: $55,952
  • Poverty rate: 12.4%
  • 5-yr. avg. unemployment rate: 4.7%
  • Population: 91,340

Jefferson County

  • Median household income: $56,607
  • Poverty rate: 14.1%
  • 5-yr. avg. unemployment rate: 5.4%
  • Population: 44,326

Clearfield County

  • Median household income: $56,982
  • Poverty rate: 13.7%
  • 5-yr. avg. unemployment rate: 6.0%
  • Population: 79,707

Mercer County

  • Median household income: $57,353
  • Poverty rate: 13.5%
  • 5-yr. avg. unemployment rate: 5.5%
  • Population: 110,600

Philadelphia County

  • Median household income: $57,537
  • Poverty rate: 22.7%
  • 5-yr. avg. unemployment rate: 8.6%
  • Population: 1,593,208

Lawrence County

  • Median household income: $57,585
  • Poverty rate: 12.3%
  • 5-yr. avg. unemployment rate: 6.8%
  • Population: 85,907

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