Here's how California's median income compares to the rest of the country

WalletHub, a personal finance website, just released its list of states where people have the highest income in 2024. 

According to the Federal Reserve, the median yearly income in the U.S. is around $74,600. But each state has a widely different median income. 

WalletHub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across three key metrics: the average annual income of the top 5%, the average for the bottom 20%, and the median for all of each state’s residents.

In California, WalletHub, found the median annual income to be $123,988. Also in California, the average annual income of the top 5% was $454,829, while the average annual income of the bottom 20% was $13,949.

California ranked in 11th place out of the 50 states. 

Source: WalletHub

"The highest-earning 10% of individuals in the United States earn over 12 times more than those in the lowest-earning 10%, based on the latest Census data. By measuring the income of various percentiles against a state's median income, we can better identify where income disparities are more prevalent, which could help us better understand why residents of certain states struggle more to make ends meet," WalletHub analyst Cassandra Happe said. 


The median income in 2019, before the coronavirus pandemic, was $78,250.

Virginia topped WallHub's list as the state where people have the highest income, when balancing between the median, top 5% and bottom 20% of earners.

The top 5% of earners made an average of $518,296 per year, while the bottom 20% made an average of $18,694. The median annual income in Virginia is $89,393.