Collecting Posts on the New Census Numbers on Poverty, Income, and HI

September 17th, 2013 at 3:33 pm

–Here’s what I think is a pretty revealing graph that packs a lot of info, over at the NYT Economix blog.  Punchline: we clearly need a regime shift in economic poilcy if we ever hope to reconnect macro-growth to broadly shared prosperity.

–CBPP’s president, Bob Greenstein, summarizes our take on the numbers.

–CBPP colleague Sharon Parrott on the millions of people that SNAP (food assistance to the poor) lifts out of poverty…or would lift, if they counted the market value of the benefits:

SNAP (the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly known as food stamps) lifted 4 million people above the official poverty line in 2012, according to new data that the Census Bureau released today.  That’s the highest level on record…

–Matt Broaddus on the health insurance results, one of the brighter spots in the report:

The share of Americans without health insurance fell for a second straight year, the Census Bureau announced today.  The data suggest that gains in children’s coverage and private coverage among the non-elderly, as well as greater enrollment in Medicare, are the key contributors.

Note the decline in uninsured kids he shows in the figure–most of that is Medicaid/CHIP expansions.

So, the share of the non-elderly with private HI coverage rose from 64.8% to 65.2%, the first increase in that variable since 2000.  These are 2012 data, so I don’t want to make a big Obamacare connection here, but I will say this: that increase is certainly inconsistent with the conservative talking point that employers will slash coverage in advance of the law talking effect.

–Danilo Trisi looks deeper into the inequality story on which I elaborate in my NYT post.

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2 comments in reply to "Collecting Posts on the New Census Numbers on Poverty, Income, and HI"

  1. smith says:

    This is the more important graph: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Distribution_of_Annual_Household_Income_in_the_United_States.png

    While the top 1% and 5% or 10% may reap all the recent gains, the top 25 to 10% are making three times what the bottom 1/3 earn, and more than twice what the bottom 1/2 earns. They’ll give up growth to preserve an inequitable system that benefits them greatly.

    In other countries with less inequality, the big difference is the very top are not so over the top, and the bottom has a higher floor. Need to sell the pivotal 25% to 10% on this idea. Their bosses and leaders are the top 10% who stand to lose a fortune (They’ll have to make do on a 1/4 million a year)

    (unfortunately the graph doesn’t distinguish one earner vs. two earner households, retired but with substantial income, or under 25/ over 65 age groups, regional cost of living)


  2. Pablo says:

    Isn’t part of the problem demographics?

    1. Aging baby boomer increase proportion of high earners
    2. Increase in unwed mothers a major contributor to increase in poverty.


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