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Sunday, September 13, 2009

US Median Income Stagnates

The US Department of Commerce released "Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2008" There is a wealth of information on US trends, but I'll focus on just a few charts.

First, every administration does it's best to define/redefine measurements to ensure the outcome of any report is "as best as it can be". So when I review charts like these, I understand this is, for all intensive purposes the most optimistic measurement possible. The reality is likely not as good as presented. So when you learn from this information, it is likely rooted in reality.

The first graph is rebalanced in "2008" dollars. So people in 1970 didn't make as much as the graphs say in "1970" dollars. They made X amount based in 2008 dollars. Since it is my view that inflation is UNDER REPORTED, the methodology used to create these number are optimistic. The result? The average us citizen is not making more money than they did in 1998. (Read Mish for more spin).
From WebSurfinMurf's Financial Blog

Plus the number of people at or below the poverty line is rising, and once again, the numbers presented here are likely to be optimistic.

From WebSurfinMurf's Financial Blog

With consumer debt at near record highs, real unemployment at closer to 16%, and average incomes stagnated for 10 years, and poverty reaching new highs, I don't see how we are about to enter 10 more years of prosperity.

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