Census Bureau Releases Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage Estimates
By Maile L. Nadelhoffer
On September 13th, 2011, the U.S. Census Bureau released national income, poverty, and health insurance coverage estimates from the Annual Social and Economic Supplement of the Current Population Survey (or CPS). In 2010, median household income in the U.S. was $49,445. This figure represents a 2.3% real decline from the 2009 median income. Arizona’s median income of $47,279 ranked 30th in the nation, coming in just below Texas and just above Idaho, and was 4.3% below the national number. Both Arizona and the nation as a whole have experienced two consecutive years of declining median incomes. However, after adjusting for inflation, Arizona’s median income increased by 18.8% between 2001 and 2010, faster income growth than the overall national increase of 17.7% during the same timeframe. New Hampshire had the highest median income in 2010, $66,707, and Mississippi the lowest, $37,985.
The nation’s official poverty rate in 2010 was 15.1%, up from 14.3% in 2009, this represents the third consecutive annual increase in the poverty rate for the United States as a whole. There were 46.2 million people in poverty in 2010, largest number in the 52 years for which poverty estimates have been published. The poverty rate increased for children younger than 18 (from 20.7 % in 2009 to 22% in 2010). The 3 year average (2008-2010) poverty rate for Arizona was 19.2%. This figure is the second highest among the 50 states and the District of Columbia. The only state with a higher poverty rate than Arizona is Mississippi with 21.3% of its population living in poverty. Arizona is followed by New Mexico at 19.1%, and District of Columbia with 18.8%. New Hampshire had the lowest poverty rate of 7.1%.
In the United States the number of people without health insurance coverage rose from 49.0 million in 2009 to 49.9 million in 2010. However, the percentage without coverage, 16.3%, was not statistically different from the rate in 2009. The percent of persons without health coverage in the United States has risen fairly steadily from 13.6% in 1999 to its current rate. Arizona’s uninsured rate for 2010 was 18%, the 11th highest rate in the nation, just behind Idaho at 19.2% and California at 19.4%. Texas had the highest uninsured rate in 2010 of 24.6%, and Massachusetts the lowest at 5.6%, just below Hawaii’s rate of 7.7% (see Table 1 on following page). Arizona’s uninsured rate was 19.4% in 1999, the rate then dropped below 17% for the next 5 years at which time it began to climb again to the current rate.
For additional information, please contact the Economic and Business Research Center.