4 Oct 2014

Census finds median income dropped as did poverty

Submitted by Brenna James

Median income slumped last year, according to recently unveiled information from the U.S. Census. Working-class Americans are having a tougher time of things, including lower earnings among other financial illnesses. Resource for this article:

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Individuals struggling to get employed

It's not exactly a secret that the past few years have not exactly been kind to many people. Many lost their jobs and lots of people are struggling to get hired, even those with a good education. There are jobs but the bulk of them are not exactly the sort of employment one can build much of a life on.

The median income in the country has now decreased, according to the United States Census annual report on household income. CNN explained that the income has decreased to $50,054 from 2010, which is a 1.5 percent decrease. Last year, the median family income dropped to $62,273, which was a bigger decrease at 1.7 percent.

Evidently 1999 was the peak year for wages since there were more paydays than there are now. Since 1999, there has been an 8.9 percent decrease in earnings adjusted for inflation. There was a decrease from 2007 by 8.1 percent.

Drop in poverty

There was also a small decrease in the number of people living under the poverty line, the Census noted. There is always a silver lining.

From 2010 to 2011, there was a 0.1 percent decrease from 15.1 percent to 15 percent for the poverty rate, according to CNN. Apparently the low wage jobs are really helping many people out since there was at first a rise in the poverty rate expected. There are 42.6 million people who live at or below the poverty line of $23,021 in yearly income for a family of four.

Hispanic and Asian households were not in poverty as often as Caucasian and African-American households, NBC News points out.

There was a 2.5 percent decrease in earnings last year for both men and women, though women still only earn 77 percent of the earnings men get.

Some doing well while others do a whole lot worse

There were a lot of people who did really well in 2011, though the majority of people did not. In fact, 22.3 percent of all income went to the top 5 percent of earners in the year, or people making over $186,000 a year, according to the Wall Street Journal. In 2010, that number was only 21.3 percent proving that there was a 1.6 percent increase.

NBC News explained that there was an increase in income equality on the Gini index. This is the first time that has happened on the index since 1993.



Wall Street Journal