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Economic Conditions Push U.S. Poverty Rate to New Heights

It is estimated that 46.2 million people are now considered to be living in poverty, which is 2.6 million more than last year. New census data released for 2010 show that the poverty rate has risen 15.1%. That’s up from 14.3% in 2009. With the current economic conditions and many Americans out of work, these statistics are not surprising.
The U.S. government defines the poverty line as an income of $22,314 a year for a family of 4 or $11,139 for an individual. The poverty rate for adults 18-64 rose to 13.7% and the rate for children under 18 increased to 22% in 2010. This translates to 1 in 5 children in America living in poverty. The rate for women living below the poverty line is 16.2% and for men the rate is 14%. Race was also a factor in the study. The poverty rate was lowest for non-Hispanic whites at 9.9%. Blacks had the highest rate at 27.4%, followed by people of Hispanic origin at 26.6%. Asians had a poverty rate of 12.1%.

The income used to calculate poverty status includes earnings, workman’s compensation, unemployment insurance, Social Security, veteran’s payments, pensions, interest and dividends.

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