Income, Poverty and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2014

Source: U.S. Census Bureau, Press Release, Release Number: CB15-157, September 16, 2015

The U.S. Census Bureau announced today that in 2014, there was no statistically significant change from 2013 in either real median household income or the official poverty rate. At the same time, the percentage of people without health insurance coverage declined. Unless otherwise noted, the following results for the nation were compiled from information collected in the 2015 Current Population Survey Annual Social and Economic Supplement.

The nation’s official poverty rate in 2014 was 14.8 percent, which means there were 46.7 million people in poverty. Neither the poverty rate nor the number of people in poverty were statistically different from 2013 estimates. This marks the fourth consecutive year in which the number of people in poverty was not statistically different from the previous year’s estimate.

Median household income in the United States in 2014 was $53,657, not statistically different in real terms from the 2013 median income. This is the third consecutive year that the annual change was not statistically significant, following two consecutive annual declines.

The percentage of people without health insurance coverage for the entire 2014 calendar year was 10.4 percent, down from 13.3 percent in 2013. The number of people without health insurance declined to 33.0 million from 41.8 million over the period.

These findings are contained in two reports: Income and Poverty in the United States: 2014 and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2014. The Current Population Survey Annual Social and Economic Supplement was conducted between February and April 2015 and collected information about income and health insurance coverage during the 2014 calendar year. The Current Population Survey, sponsored jointly by the U.S. Census Bureau and U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, is conducted every month and is the primary source of labor force statistics for the U.S. population; it is used to calculate the monthly unemployment rate estimates. Supplements are added in most months; the Annual Social and Economic Supplement questionnaire is designed to give annual, calendar-year, national estimates of income, poverty and health insurance numbers and rates.

Another Census Bureau report, The Supplemental Poverty Measure: 2014, was also released today. With support from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, it describes research showing a different way of measuring poverty in the United States. The supplemental poverty measure serves as an additional indicator of economic well-being and provides a deeper understanding of economic conditions. The Census Bureau has published poverty estimates using this supplemental measure annually since 2011. Today marks the first time the official poverty measure and the supplemental poverty measure have been released simultaneously.
Related:
Online Webinar, Wednesday, Sept. 16, 10 a.m. EDT
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Reports and Data Tables
Income and Poverty in the United States: 2014
Source: Carmen DeNavas-Walt and Bernadette D. Proctor, U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Reports, P60-252, September 2015
Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2014
Source: Jessica C. Smith and Carla Medalia, U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Reports, P60-253, September 2015
The Supplemental Poverty Measure: 2014
Source: Kathleen Short, U.S. Census Bureau, Current Population Reports, P60-254, September 2015
Complete set of poverty thresholds
Health Insurance Coverage Data
Income data
Poverty data