Middle-class incomes rise; rates of poverty, uninsured fall in U.S.

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Median household income increased 5.2 percent between 2014 and 2015 while the percentages of those in poverty and those without health insurance declined across the country, the U.S. Census Bureau reported Tuesday.

For the first time since the recession in 2007 the annual median income increased— from $53,718 in 2014 to $56,516.

In 2015, 43.1 million people were living in poverty, which is about 3.5 million fewer than in 2014. Officials said the 1.2 percent point decrease in the poverty rate to 13.5 percent is the largest drop since 1999.

Women earned a median salary of $40,742 in 2015, which is about 80 percent of the $51,212 men were earning working full-time and year-round.

The gender wage gap is narrowing but at a slower rate than in previous years.

Connecticut has the fourth-lowest poverty rate in the country at 9.6 percent. Only New Hampshire, Minnesota, and Vermont have a smaller percentage of their populations in poverty.

The rate of uninsured residents in the country has fallen from 10.4 percent in 2014 to 9.1 in 2015. That’s about 29 million uninsured.

Connecticut is among the five states in the country with the smallest change in uninsured rate change between 2014 and 2015, since it had such a high rate of those with health insurance already.

Connecticut is tied for 9th lowest uninsured rate in the country at 6 percent. Massachusetts is in first with 2.8 percent while Texas has the highest rate for uninsured at 17.1 percent.

Check our work: The GitHub repository containing our work is available here. We encourage you to look over our calculations and expand upon our analysis.

What do you think?

  • Joseph Brzezinski

    Some mention of how poverty is defined would help in interpreting the statistics would be helpful.