Written by Jill R. Shah and Alex Tanzi | Bloomberg
U.S. household incomes fell in 2020 when the national poverty rate rose from a 0-year low as the Kovid-1 pandemic epidemic devastated the U.S. economy and laid off millions.
The median, inflation-adjusted household income fell 2.9% to $ 67,521 last year, according to annual data released Tuesday by the U.S. Census Bureau. For five consecutive years, the poverty rate has risen one percent to 11.4% and reached its lowest level since 1959 in 2019.
The data help to paint a picture of the economic health of American households in 2020, which in the first annual economic downturn since 2009 saw millions of jobs lost and widened existing inequalities.
Low-wage service-industry workers and people of color have to lose their jobs. The government’s stimulus checks and additional 600 600 a week for unemployment benefits help soften the blow, support income and spend it amid widespread unemployment.
The supplementary poverty measure, which includes many government assistance programs, fell 2.6 percentage points to 1.1% in 2020, the lowest since the gauge began in 2009. , Which lifted 11.7 million people out of poverty in the first two rounds of distribution. Five million people were associated with poverty because of medical expenses.
“It really highlights the importance of our social security net,” said Liana Fox, head of the Bureau of Census Poverty Statistics.
These results could resonate in a divided Congress, where President Joe Biden’s $ 3.5 trillion “Build Back Better” plan faces uncertain prospects. The two anchors of last year’s cowardly response – the increased unemployment benefit and a federal eviction moratorium – have expired, raising concerns.
According to the Census Bureau, .2.2 million people were living in poverty in 2020, 3.3 million more than a year ago. It considers a two-parent, two-child family to live in low-income poverty of $ 26,246; Measurements vary by family size.
The data show that government poverty measurements are outdated and “cannot be used to test public policy,” said Professor David Johnson, a researcher at the Institute for Social Research and Ford School of Public Policy at the University of Michigan.
Poverty rates have risen among Hispanic and non-Hispanic whites. Although the poverty rate among blacks peaked at 19.5% and the rate in Asia also increased, both were not statistically significant changes since 2019.
Poverty in one in four people without a high school diploma was less than 4% compared to people with a bachelor’s degree or higher.
Women are still 12.6% more likely to live in poverty than 10.2% for men. The female-male income ratio was 0.83, statistically no different from the 2019 ratio.
For single female-headed households, 23.4% were in poverty, 11.4% for single-male-headed households. Married couples saw the lowest poverty rate at 7.7%, slightly higher than a year ago.
The median income for non-Hispanic white, Asian, and Hispanic families declined in 2020, while for black households it was not statistically different. The real middle income has declined in every part of the country except the Northeast. Each household’s income group declined by 2020, with the exception of the top 5% of households.
Tuesday’s report found that Americans without health insurance grew 8.6% last year, to 28 million people. For people with health insurance coverage, 66.5% is in private insurance and 34.8% in public plans.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.