California Poverty Rates Rise, Median Income Falls In New Census Stats
The Census bureau has released data from 2011 demonstrating that California continues to have some of the highest rates of poverty and one of the highest rates of medically uninsured populations in the nation.California's poverty rate has ticked up since 2010 while its median income fell for the fifth year in a row. California's poverty rate rose from 16.3% in 2010 to 16.9% in 2011. That puts us on par with West Virginia, but we're still better than much of the South and the Sunbelt. Poverty rates in the United States held steady at about 15% overall. For comparison, Mississippi's poverty rate in 2011 was 22.7% and New Hampshire's was 6.6%. You can see how we rank comparatively in this L.A. Times graphic.
California's median income has been falling for the past 5 years when adjusted for inflation. This year the median income for the state was $53,367, which is higher than the national average of $50,054. But like the rest of the nation, California's median income has been declining. Last year's median income in 2011 dollars was $55,995. The median income has been declining since 2006 when it was $61,708 (again, in 2011 dollars).
Overall, the rate of medically uninsured people declined in the United States in 2011 from 16.3% to 15.7%, which is being attributed to the rising rates of young adults who are insured under the new healthcare law. But the rate of medically uninsured people actually rose in California from 19.4% to 19.7%, which made it the fifth highest rate in the nation. We're still better off than Texas where 23.8% of the population is uninsured, but we're far from Massachusetts, where only 3.4% of the population is uninsured (we can probably safely chalk that one up to Romneycare).
Here is a release from the Census Bureau. The Los Angeles Times did an analysis, which focused on the national picture. If you're interested in seeing how the nation's overall financial health is doing since the recession, check out these graphs from Business Insider.