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Fed: Sandy cost New York State residents $4.5B in wages

Closed businesses on Fulton Street at the South

Closed businesses on Fulton Street at the South Street Seaport on Wednesday in Manhattan. A tidal surge during superstorm Sandy flooded the area the popular tourist area. (March 21, 2013). (Credit: Charles Eckert)

New York State residents lost about $4.5 billion in wages last year because of superstorm Sandy, according federal estimates.

The U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis said this week that the Oct. 29 storm reduced residents’ combined 2012 earnings of $1 trillion by 0.8 percent.

Figures for Long Island won't be available for months, bureau officials said yesterday. Personal income statewide averaged $52,095 in 2012.

The officials said they estimated the impact of Sandy on earnings was based on census data for the number of private-sector workers affected by the storm and their average daily wage rates.

Incomes fell the most in durable goods manufacturing, health care and social assistance, hotels and food services. The biggest gains were in finance and insurance, management of companies and local and state governments.

Overall, New York State residents earned 2.4 percent more last year than in 2011.

Among the 50 states and the District of Columbia, wages increased an average of 3.5 percent, year over year. That’s substantially slower than the 5.2-percent gain seen between 2010 and 2011.

North Dakota posted the largest rise in personal income last year, 12.4 percent, due to expansion of the mining and construction industries. The biggest reduction, 0.2 percent, was in South Dakota, because of a severe drought.   

Besides New York, New Jersey was the only other state where the bureau said personal incomes were impacted by Sandy. New Jerseyans lost $1.6 billion, or 0.7 percent, of their combined earnings of $475.4 billion.

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