NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis

Prosperity Leads Blacks into Suburbs

September 10, 2001

The economic boom of the 1990s translated into dramatic material benefits for U.S. African-American families. And rising incomes propelled them into suburbs in large numbers.

  • Some 51 percent of black married-couple households had incomes of $50,000 or more, according to an analysis of last year's Current Population Survey in the July issue of American Demographics -- up from 47 percent in 1999.
  • And the Census Bureau reported that a record 17 percent of blacks ages 25 and over held college degrees -- up from 15 percent the year before.
  • Between 1980 and 1990, the proportion of blacks living in suburbs jumped from 34 percent to 39 percent.
  • On average black suburban households have median incomes 44 percent higher than their peers living in cities -- and 10 percent boast incomes of at least $100,000.

Source: Gene Koretz, "Economic Trends: Giant Strides for U.S. Blacks," Business Week, September 3, 2001; David Whelan, "Black Boom in the 'Burbs," American Demographics, August 31, 2001.


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