A Profile of the Working Poor - 2015
Author: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Topic: Poverty issues
Publisher: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Location: United States
Format: Report
Content Type: Research
Publication Date: April 1, 2017
In 2015, according to the U.S. Census Bureau, about 43.1 million people, or 13.5 percent of the nation’s population, lived below the official poverty level. Although the poor were primarily children and adults who had not participated in the labor force during the year, 8.6 million individuals were among the “working poor” in 2015, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics; the 8.6 million figure was down from 9.5 million in 2014. The working poor are people who spent at least 27 weeks in the labor force (that is, working or looking for work) but whose incomes still fell below the official poverty level. In 2015, the working-poor rate—the ratio of the working poor to all individuals in the labor force for at least 27 weeks—was 5.6 percent, 0.7 percentage point lower than the previous year’s figure.
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