Median income declined, finds Census

Published: Sat 25 Jan 2014
A blog entry by Nicole Anderson

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Nicole Anderson

Nicole Anderson's Blog

Median income declined last year, according to recently published information from the United States Census. Working-class Americans are having a tougher time of things, such as lower wages among other economic illnesses. Article resource: Median Income

Median income getting worse

It's not exactly a secret that the past few years have not exactly been kind to lots of people. Many lost their jobs and lots of people are struggling to get employed, even those with a good education. There are jobs but the bulk of them aren't exactly the sort of employment one can build much of a life on.

The United States Census recently unveiled its annual report on household income, according to CNN, and median income has fallen, though only just. Median income decreased to $50,054 in 2011, a 1.5 percent decrease of 2010. Median household income for families, according to NBC News, declined slightly more, at 1.7 percent, with family median income having declined to $62,273 last year.

Since 2007, there has been an 8.1 percent decrease in earnings. Since 1999, there was an 8.9 percent decrease when adjusted for inflation. That was the peak year for wages with more payday than any other.

Little bit less poverty

Perhaps on a lighter note from declining median income, the Census also found that poverty, or rather the amount of people estimated to be living in poverty, dropped as well, though only just.

From 2010 to 2011, there was a 0.1 percent decrease from 15.1 percent to 15 percent for the poverty rate, according to CNN. Evidently the low wage jobs are really helping a lot of people out since there was at first an increase in the poverty rate expected. There are 42.6 million people who live at or below the poverty line of $23,021 in annual income for a family of four.

Hispanic and Asian households were not in poverty as often as Caucasian and African-American households, NBC News points out.

The gender gap was unchanged, as women generally earned 77 percent of the earnings of men in 2011. Both genders, however, experienced a 2.5 percent wage decline last year.

Gas between wealthy and poor

There was a 1.6 percent increase in the amount of income in the nation belonging to the top earners. In 2010, only 21.3 percent of income went to the top 5 percent of earners, or those making over $186,000 a year. In 2011, that number was at 22.3 percent, according to the Wall Street Journal. Though there were a lot of people who did really well in 2011, most did not.

Income inequality is measured via the Gini index, a way of studying income inequality. It's the first time since 1993, according to NBC News, that an increase in income inequality was recorded, using that rubric.



Wall Street Journal