“Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2019”

by Calculated Risk on 9/15/2020 10:59:00 AM

This survey was impacted by COVID, and the results are probably distorted (see last paragraph below).

From the Census Bureau: Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2019

The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that median household income in 2019 increased 6.8% from 2018, and the official poverty rate decreased 1.3 percentage points. Meanwhile the percentage of people with health insurance coverage for all or part of 2019 was 92.0% and 8.0% of people, or 26.1 million, did not have health insurance at any point during 2019, according to the 2020 Current Population Survey Annual Social and Economic Supplement (CPS ASEC).

Median household income was $68,703 in 2019, an increase of 6.8% from the 2018 median. Between 2018 and 2019, the real median earnings of all workers increased by 1.4%, while the real median earnings of full-time, year-round workers increased 0.8%.

The official poverty rate in 2019 was 10.5%, a decrease of 1.3 percentage points from 11.8% in 2018. This is the fifth consecutive annual decline in the national poverty rate. Since 2014, the poverty rate has fallen 4.3 percentage points, from 14.8% to 10.5%. The 2019 poverty rate of 10.5% is the lowest rate observed since estimates were initially published for 1959. The number of people in poverty in 2019 was 34.0 million, 4.2 million fewer people than 2018.

While the Census Bureau went to great lengths to complete interviews by telephone, the response rate for the CPS basic household survey was 73% in March 2020, about 10 percentage points lower than in preceding months and the same period in 2019, which were regularly above 80%. The change from conducting first interviews in person to making first contacts by telephone contributed to the lower response rates and it is likely that the characteristics of people for whom a telephone number was found may be systematically different from the people for whom the Census Bureau was unable to obtain a telephone number.
emphasis added

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