Here’s Where African Americans Are Doing Great Economically

January 19, 2015  |  

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There are some cities in the U.S. where African Americans are fairing much better financially than other places.

Forbes looked into which of America’s 52 largest metropolitan areas presented African-Americans with the best opportunities. They considered homeownership, entrepreneurship (as measured by the self-employment rate), median household income, and demographic trends, measuring the change in the African-American population from 2000 to 2013 in these metro areas.

It may be surprisingly to some but the South accounts for an impressive 13 of the top 15 metro areas. “This shift of African-Americans to Southern metro areas is widespread. Population growth since 2000 above 40 percent was posted by No. 2 metro area Raleigh, N.C.; Charlotte, N.C. (sixth); Orlando (seventh) as well as the three cities that tie for eighth place: Miami; Richmond, Va.; and San Antonio. The same can be said of Texas’ other big cities: Austin (11th), Houston (12th) and Dallas-Fort Worth (13th),” reports Forbes.

Here are the three top cities:

No. 1: Atlanta, GA: Median Household Income, $41,803; Home Ownership Rate, 46.9 percent; Share Who Are Self-Employed, 17.1 percent; Change In Population, 2000-13, 49.9 percent.

No. 2: Raleigh, NC: Median Household Income, $42,285; Home Ownership Rate, 46.7 percent;
Share Who Are Self-Employed, 12.8 percent; Change In Population, 2000-13, 55.9 percent.

No. 3: Washington, DC-VA-MD-WV: Median Household Income, $64,896; Home Ownership Rate, 49.2 percent; Share Who Are Self-Employed, 15.1 percent; Change In Population, 2000-13, 19.7 percent.

Baltimore, MD, Charlotte NC-SC, and Virginia Beach-Norfolk, VA also made the list.

But overall the picture isn’t too pretty. Racial tensions are high. According to a Bloomberg poll in December, 53 percent of respondents believed that race relations have declined since Obama was elected in 2008.

On top of this, the economic gap between whites and Blacks has remained high. Unemployment for African Americans was still 10.4 percent in December — more than twice that of Whites. This has been the same for most of the past 40 years.

And while, Blacks’ real median household income moved up to $34,598 in 2013 it is still roughly 59 percent that of Whites. This ratio has not varied much since the Census Bureau started tracking this data in 1967.

Household wealth for African Americans dropped an incredible 31 percent during the recession. In comparison, the wealth of White families fell just 11 percent from 2007 to 2010.

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