NJ’s wealth shows some improvement in latest report
New Jersey's wealth index has been rising, but there have been bumps along the road, according to the latest RegentAtlantic New Jersey Wealth Index (RANJWI).
In the third quarter of 2014, RANJWI recorded a 42 out of a possible 100. RegentAtlantic developed the index which is based on four major components: employment, home values, personal income and stock performance. The index can range from 0 to 100.
Andy Kapryin, a research director at RegentAtlantic in Morristown, described 42 as "near average." But he added, "that average kind of masks some of the differences in what is driving our wealth."
Kapyrin said a lot of the index's rise can be pinned on employment gains, but better performance for the health of New Jersey's wealth has been held back by a lag in income growth and home prices.
But things are starting to pick up on the income growth front as well. "Income is really starting to increase because there has been pressure on wages." To reinforce that, in the third quarter, personal income grew 3.1 percent, beating inflation by a fair margin.
In addition, New Jersey has seen one of the biggest drops in its unemployment rate in the past year. It registered at 6.6 percent in October.
Kapyrin said jobs losses in Atlantic City have been offset by public sector hiring, especially in education.