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Friday, September 11, 2009

Poverty Rate Surged During 2008

povertyThe Commerce Department just released stats on poverty and health insurance coverage for 2008. As you might have guessed, the numbers for the wealthiest nation that has ever existed aren't pretty. Poverty rose last year, as did the number of Americans who don't have health insurance. Here's a clip from the U.S. Census Bureau report:

"...The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that real median household income in the United States fell 3.6 percent between 2007 and 2008, from $52,163 to $50,303. This breaks a string of three years of annual income increases and coincides with the recession that started in December 2007.

The nation’s official poverty rate in 2008 was 13.2 percent, up from 12.5 percent in 2007. There were 39.8 million people in poverty in 2008, up from 37.3 million in 2007.

Meanwhile, the number of people without health insurance coverage rose from 45.7 million in 2007 to 46.3 million in 2008, while the percentage remained unchanged at 15.4 percent..."

And how does the Commerce Department define poverty? Here you go:

"...As defined by the Office of Management and Budget and updated for inflation using the Consumer Price Index, the weighted average poverty threshold for a family of four in 2008 was $22,025; for a family of three, $17,163; for a family of two, $14,051; and for unrelated individuals, $10,991..."

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