Sep 14th, 2009 by ravi
The change you have been waiting for!

In the recession, the nation’s poverty rate climbed to 13.2 percent last year, up from 12.5 percent in 2007, according to an annual report released Thursday by the Census Bureau. The report also documented a decline in employer-provided health insurance and in coverage for adults.

The rise in the poverty rate, to the highest level since 1997, portends even larger increases this year, which has registered far higher unemployment than in 2008, economists said.

The bureau said 39.8 million residents last year lived below the poverty line, defined as an income of $22,025 for a family of four.

In another sign of both the recession and the long-term stagnation of middle-class wages, median family incomes in 2008 fell to $50,300, compared with $52,200 the year before. This wiped out the income gains of the previous three years, the report said.

Adjusted for inflation, in fact, median family incomes were lower in 2008 than a decade earlier.

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