Even as the economy shows signs of improvement and poverty levels off, new U.S. census data suggests the gains are halting and uneven. Depending on education, race, income and even marriage, not all segments of the population are seeing an economic turnaround.
The new census data shows that lower-income households are a steadily increasing share of the population, while middle- to higher-income groups shrank or were flat. In 2012, households earning less than $24,999 made up 24.4 percent of total households, up from 21.7 percent four years earlier. The share of households earning $50,000 to $99,999 slipped from 31.2 percent to 29.9 percent. Top-income households making more than $200,000 dipped less, from 5 percent to 4.6 percent over that period.
However, things in DC have been in party mode. The income of the typical D.C. household rose 23.3% between 2000 and 2012 to an inflation-adjusted $66,583, according to the Census Bureau’s American Community Survey. During this period, median household incomes for the nation as a whole dropped 6.6% — from $55,030 to $51,371.
We continue to believe things are slowly improving, but the economy in our opinion still has significant healing that needs to take place before we see any robust growth.