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News from EPI NewsFlash: Quick take on Census numbers from EPI economists

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NewsFlash: August 26, 2008

Quick take on Census numbers from EPI economists

“Despite a slight gain of $665 last year, middle-income households are no better off now that they were at the prior economic peak of 2000. In other words, the economic recovery of the 2000s, which ended last year, has done very little to boost their living standards. They’ve done their part, contributing to strong productivity growth, but they’ve far too little to show for it,” said senior economist Jared Bernstein.

Elise Gould, an economist and health care specialist at the Economic Policy Institute said: “There is some good news, in that for the first time since 2000, the number of uninsured Americans has dropped. But unfortunately, we’re still seeing an unraveling of the private insurance system. The percent of Americans with employer-based coverage continued to fall for the 7th year in a row.”

EPI will have a complete analysis of the Census Bureau report this morning.


1) Median income rose as did poverty in 2007; 2000s have been extremely weak for living standards of most households

2) Overall health insurance coverage rises, but masks decline in private coverage

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