At 10am tomorrow, the Census Bureau will release the poverty, household income, and health insurance coverage data for 2010. Being that they’re for last year, these data don’t move markets like the jobs numbers, for example, but they’re closely watched indicators of very important stuff:
–the number and share of the population with incomes below the poverty line;
–the number and share covered by health insurance from various sources (e.g., employer, gov’t);
–income of the median household;
Check the CBPP website out starting shortly after the data release for lots of information and analysis. And read this analysis by one of our experts on these data, Arloc Sherman, for a sense of what to look for.
One compelling aspect of this year’s data is the extent to which the safety net—stuff like unemployment insurance and nutritional assistance—helped to offset at least some of the damage done by the market failure known as the Great Recession.
I mean, as long as we’re in the midst of these discussions about cutting the crap out of the safety net—while preserving highend tax cuts—maybe we should pause for a moment and remind ourselves why it’s important.
I’ll be on the Diane Rehm radio show on NPR tomorrow from 10-11 (at least that’s when it’s on locally on WAMU) talking about the President’s jobs bill, but I plan to try to weave some of these results into the discussion.