FTB Reports Statewide Median Income Up in 2013

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For Immediate Release

04.29.2015

Sacramento —  Median income in 2013 increased for the state’s individual income tax filers, as well as those filing jointly, according to figures released today by the Franchise Tax Board. The data lags by one year because FTB does its analysis only after all returns are filed by the end of the year, including those from taxpayers who received extensions.

Statewide median income for all individual tax returns in 2013 was $36,624, an increase of 2.0 percent compared to 2012. The median for joint returns was $73,378, an increase of 3.4 percent, FTB reported. Median income represents the point at which half of tax returns show more income and half show less.

California taxpayers filed more than 16 million 2013 state income tax returns, reporting almost $1.42 trillion of adjusted gross income. This is a decrease of 3.1 percent from the 2012 figure of $1.46 trillion. Adjusted gross income is total income increased or reduced by specific adjustments before taking the standard or itemized deduction.

Over the past 40 years, the Bay Area counties of Marin, San Mateo, and Santa Clara have consistently reported the highest median incomes in the state. In 2013, Marin County continued to lead, reporting a median of $133,389 for joint returns -- an increase of 4.6 percent over 2012.

Los Angeles County taxpayers filed more than a quarter (26.5 percent) of all 2013 income tax returns in California. They reported median incomes of $31,516 for individual returns, and $62,724 for joint returns, ranking 39th and 26th respectively.

The largest percentage gain in median income for individual filers was Mono County’s 5.9 percent. For joint returns, the largest increase was in Colusa County, with a 7.2 percent increase.

Top 10 Counties Reporting Highest Joint Tax Return Median Income

Rank County Medium Income
(Joint Returns)
1 Marin $133,389
2 San Mateo $115,651
3 Santa Clara $115,013
4 Alameda $97,715
5 Contra Costa $96,748
6 San Francisco $93,404
7 Placer $87,258
8 El Dorado $86,746
9 Orange $80,550
10 Ventura $79,150

Editor’s note: For specific county information, see the chart on our press releases page. For 1999-2012 data, go to ftb.ca.gov and check under Archive Median Income.

For more information on other taxes and fees in California, visit taxes.ca.gov.

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