United States Bureau of Labor Statistics


A Profile of the Working Poor, 1995

August 1997
Report 914
Thomas W. Hale

Summary

Table A. Poverty status of persons and primary families in the labor force for 27 weeks or more, 1993-95 (Number in thousands)

Demographic characteristic

Educational attainment

Family structure

Unrelated individuals

Labor market problems

Technical Note

Table 1. Persons in the labor force: Poverty status and work experience by weeks in the labor force, 1995 (Numbers in thousands)

Table 2. Persons in the labor force for 27 weeks or more: Poverty status by age, sex, race, and Hispanic origin, 1995 (Numbers in thousands)

Table 3. Persons in the labor force for 27 weeks or more: Poverty status by educational attainment, race, and sex, 1995 (Numbers in thousands)

Table 4. Persons in families and unrelated individuals: Poverty status and work experience, 1995 (Numbers in thousands)

Table 5. Primary families: Poverty status, presence of related children, and work experience of family members in the labor force for 27 weeks or more, 1995 (Numbers in thousands)

Table 6. Unrelated individuals in the labor force for 27 weeks or more: Poverty status by age, sex, race, Hispanic origin, and living arrangement, 1995 (Numbers in thousands)

Table 7. Persons in the labor force for 27 weeks or more: Poverty status and labor market problems of full-time wage and salary workers, 1995 (Numbers in thousands)

SUMMARY

In 1995, seven and a half million persons were classified as the "working poor," nearly 200,000 fewer than in 1994. The working poor are individuals who spent at least 27 weeks in the labor force (working or looking for work), but whose incomes fell below the official poverty level. The ratio of the working poor to all persons in the labor force for at least 27 weeks-- the poverty rate--declined for the second year in a row, to 5.9 percent; previous rates were 6.7 percent in 1993, and 6.2 percent in 1994. (See table A.)

Overall, 36.4 million people were living below the official poverty level in 1995--1.6 million fewer than in 1994. Although the vast majority of the Nation's poor were not in the labor force in 1995, about 1 in 5 were labor force participants for more than half the year. About 60 percent of these working poor usually worked full time, although full-time work greatly reduces a person's likelihood of being poor. In fact, among persons in the labor force for 27 weeks or more, the poverty rate among those who usually worked full time was 4.3 percent. (See table 1.)

This report presents data on the linkages between labor force activity and poverty in 1995 for individual workers and their families. The data were collected in the March 1996 work experience and income supplement to the Current Population Survey. For a detailed description of the source of the data and an explanation of the concepts and definitions used in this report, see the Technical Note.

Table A. Poverty status of persons and primary families in the labor force for 27 weeks or more, 1993-95 (Number in thousands)

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

         Characteristic         |    1993     |    1994     |    1995

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

Total persons1..................|   123,125   |   124,303   |  126,020

     In poverty.................|     8,222   |     7,660   |    7,484

     Poverty rate...............|       6.7   |       6.2   |      5.9

   Unrelated individuals........|    23,584   |    23,622   |   24,207

     In poverty.................|     2,635   |     2,322   |    2,312

     Poverty rate...............|      11.2   |       9.8   |      9.5

 Primary families2..............|    55,769   |    56,789   |   57,262

     In poverty.................|     4,155   |     4,111   |    4,008

     Poverty rate...............|       7.5   |       7.2   |      7.0

----------------------------------------------------------------------

1 Includes persons in families, not shown separately.

2 Primary families with at least one member in the labor force for more than half of the year.

Demographic characteristic

Among those who were in the labor force 27 weeks or more, slightly fewer women (3.7 million) than men (3.8 million) were poor in 1995. However, because substantially fewer women than men overall were in the labor force for that length of time, working women continued to have a higher poverty rate than men. The proportion of women labor force participants in poverty fell by half a percentage point over the year to 6.4 percent, while that for men remained at 5.6 percent. (See table 2.)

About three-fourths of the working poor was comprised of white workers; however, poverty rates for blacks and Hispanics were two and three times higher, respectively, than the rate for whites. White men and women in the labor force for more than half a year were equally as likely to be poor, but there were differences in the poverty rates for minority men and women. As in earlier analyses, young workers had the highest poverty rates, due in part to their lower earnings and higher rates of unemployment. Black and Hispanic teenagers were especially likely to be among the working poor. (See table 2.)

Educational attainment

Higher educational levels are associated with dramatically lower levels of poverty. Among those in the labor force half a year or longer, the rate of poverty for those workers with less than a high school diploma (17.2 percent) was almost triple that of high school graduates (6.1 percent). Poverty rates were 3.3 percent for workers with an associate degree, and 1.5 percent for those with a 4-year college degree. Poverty rates were generally higher for black workers than for white workers, at both higher and lower education levels. (See table 3.)

Family structure

The rates and levels of poverty varied substantially with differences in family structure, including marital status, the number of people in a family, and the workforce status of family members. In 1995, about 4.0 million families lived below the poverty level despite having at least one family member in the labor market for 27 weeks or more, little changed from the 1994 total.

The poverty rate for families, defined as the ratio of poor families with workers to all families with workers, was 7.0 percent in 1995. Families maintained by women had over four times the poverty rate, and families maintained by men had over twice the poverty rate than that of married-couple families. Families with children under age 18 that were maintained by a woman who was the only labor force member had the highest poverty rate--25.2 percent–while similar families headed by men had a 15 percent rate of poverty. Over five times as many poor families were maintained by women, than were maintained by men. (See table 5.)

Married-couple families had the lowest rate of poverty. For married couples with one member in the workforce, the poverty rate was 10.5 percent if the husband worked, and 6.8 percent if the wife worked. Poverty was rare (1.7 percent) among married-couple families in which two or more members were in the workforce.

Unrelated individuals

In 1995, 2.3 million unrelated individuals who were in the labor force for more than half the year lived below the poverty level. Unrelated individuals are defined as persons who lived by themselves or with others not related to them. Their poverty rate was 9.5 percent in 1995, slightly below the 9.8-percent rate reported for this group in 1994. (See table 6.)

The highest poverty rate for unrelated individuals in the labor force was for teenagers, 42.3 percent. The rates for men and women were 9.3 and 9.9 percent, respectively. Although white, unrelated workers living in poverty far outnumbered blacks and Hispanics, their poverty rate was the lowest (8.9 percent), followed by blacks (14.3 percent), and Hispanics (18.0 percent). Most of the unrelated working poor lived with others and had almost twice the poverty rate as the unrelated working poor who lived alone. Many unrelated individuals with below poverty earnings live with others out of necessity. Conversely, many of those who live alone do so because they have sufficient incomes to support themselves.

Labor market problems

There are three primary labor market problems characterizing workers with incomes below the poverty threshold: Unemployment, low earnings, and involuntary part- time employment. (See the definitions provided in the Technical Note.) Among persons who participated in the labor force for more than half the year and usually worked in full-time wage and salary positions, 3.9 million, or 4 percent, lived in poverty in 1995, unchanged from previous year. (See table 7.)

About 86 percent of the 3.9 million working poor who usually worked full time experienced at least one of the major labor market problems in 1995. Low earnings continued to be the most common problem; 7 in 10 poor workers were subject to low earnings alone, or in combination with other labor market problems. Unemployment alone, or in combination with other problems, characterized the difficulties of 4 in 10 of the working poor. Only 4.9 percent of the working poor experienced all three problems--low earnings, unemployment, and involuntary part-time work.

Some 541,000 of these working poor, or 13.8 percent of the total in this group, did not experience any of the three labor market problems in 1995. Their poverty status may be associated with other factors, including short-term employment, voluntary part- time work, or a family structure that increases the risk of poverty.

Technical Note

Source of data

The primary source of data in this report is the work experience and income supplement to the March 1996 Current Population Survey (CPS). The CPS is a survey of about 50,000 households conducted monthly by the Bureau of the Census for the Bureau of Labor Statistics to collect demographic, social, and economic information about working-age persons. The work experience and income information collected in the March supplement refers to activity in the entire prior calendar year. The focus of this report is persons in the labor force for 27 weeks or more.

Because the estimates are based on a sample, they may differ from the figures that would have been obtained from a complete census using the same questionnaire and procedures. Sampling variability may be relatively large in cases where the numbers are small. Thus, small estimates, or small differences between estimates, should be interpreted with caution. For a detailed explanation of the March supplement to the Current Population Survey, its sampling variability, and more complete definitions than those provided below, see: Poverty in the United States: 1995. Current Population Reports, Series P-60, No, 194, Bureau of the Census, September 1996.

Information in this report will be made available to sensory impaired individuals upon request. Voice phone: (202) 606-7828; TDD phone: (202) 606-5897; TDD message referral phone: 1-800-326-2577. This material is in the public domain and, with appropriate credit, may be reproduced without permission. For more information on the data provided in this report, write the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Division of Labor Force Statistics, Room 4675, 2 Massachusetts Avenue, NE, Washington, DC 20212, or telephone (202) 606-6378.

Concepts and definitions

Poverty classification. Poverty statistics presented in this report are based on definitions developed by the Social Security Administration in 1964 and revised by Federal interagency committees in 1969 and 1981. These definitions were originally based on the Department of Agriculture's Economy Food Plan and reflected the different consumption requirements of families based on factors such as family size and the number of children under 18 years of age. The actual poverty thresholds vary in accordance with the makeup of the family. In 1995, the average poverty threshold for a family of four was $15,569; for a family of nine persons or more, the threshold was $31,280; and for an unrelated individual aged 65 and over, it was $7,309. The poverty thresholds are updated each year to reflect changes in the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers (CPI-U). For more information, see Poverty in the United States: 1995, cited above.

Low earnings. The low-earnings level, as first developed in 1987, represented the average of the real value of the minimum wage between 1967 to 1987 for a 40-hour week. The base year of 1967 was chosen because that was the first year in which minimum-wage legislation covered essentially the same broad group of workers who are currently covered. The low earnings level has subsequently been adjusted each year using the CPI-U so that the measure maintains the same real value it held in 1987. In 1995, the low earnings threshold was $224.00 per week. For a more complete definition, see Bruce W. Klein and Philip L. Rones. "A Profile of the Working Poor." Monthly Labor Review. October 1989. pp. 3-13.

Income. Data on income are limited to money income received in the calendar year preceding the March survey date before personal income taxes and payroll deductions. For a complete definition of the income concept, see Poverty in the United States: 1995, cited above.

In the labor force. Persons in the labor force are those who worked or looked for work sometime during the calendar year preceding the March survey date. The number of weeks in the labor force is accumulated over the entire year. The focus in this report is persons in the labor force for 27 weeks or more.

Involuntary part-time workers. These are persons who, in at least 1 week of the year, worked fewer than 35 hours because of slack work or business conditions, or because they could not find full-time work. The number of weeks of involuntary part- time work is accumulated over the year.

Unemployed. Unemployed persons are those who looked for work while not employed or those who were on layoff from a job and expecting recall. The number of weeks unemployed is accumulated over the entire year.

Family. A family is a group of two or more persons residing together who are related by birth, marriage, or adoption. Persons in related subfamilies--married couples, or parent-child groups sharing the living quarters of another family member--are included as members of that family and are not distinct family units. The count of families used in this report does not include unrelated subfamilies, such as lodgers, guests, or resident employees living in a household but not related to the householder (the person in whose name the housing unit is owned or rented). Families are classified either as married-couple families or as those maintained by men or women without spouses present. Family status is determined at the time of the March interview and thus may be different from that of the previous year.

Unrelated individuals. These are persons who are not living with any relatives. Such individuals may be living alone, reside in a non-related family household, or live in group quarters with other unrelated individuals.

Related children. Data on related children refer to own children (including sons, daughters, and step or adopted children) of the husband, wife, or person maintaining the family and all other children related to the householder by blood, marriage, or adoption.

Race. White, black, and other are terms used to describe the race of workers. Included in the "other" group are American Indians, Alaskan Natives, and Asians and Pacific Islanders; because of their relatively small sample size, data for this group are not published.

Hispanic origin. This term refers to persons who identify themselves in the CPS enumeration process as Mexican, Puerto Rican, Cuban, Central or South American, or of some other Hispanic origin or descent. Persons of Hispanic origin may be of any race; thus, they also are included in both the white and black population groups.

Table 1. Persons in the labor force: Poverty status and work experience by weeks in the labor force, 1995 (Numbers in thousands)

                                                                                          27 weeks or more in the labor force    

                 Poverty status and work experience               Total in the labor                                             

                                                                        force                                                    

                                                                                              Total             50 to 52 weeks   

                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                 

                               TOTAL                                                                                             

                                                                                                                                 

       Total in labor force....................................        141,659               126,020               111,922       

         Did not work during the year..........................          2,688                 1,085                   913       

         Worked during the year................................        138,971               124,935               111,009       

           Usual full-time workers.............................        109,329               103,545                95,620       

           Usual part-time workers.............................         29,643                21,390                15,388       

             Involuntary part-time workers.....................          5,497                 4,307                 3,393       

             Voluntary part-time workers.......................         24,146                17,083                11,995       

                                                                                                                                 

                     At or above poverty level                                                                                   

                                                                                                                                 

       Total in labor force....................................        131,062               118,539               105,924       

         Did not work during the year..........................          1,550                   583                   483       

         Worked during the year................................        129,512               117,955               105,441       

           Usual full-time workers.............................        103,705                99,113                91,942       

           Usual part-time workers.............................         25,808                18,843                13,499       

             Involuntary part-time workers.....................          4,026                 3,190                 2,490       

             Voluntary part-time workers.......................         21,782                15,653                11,009       

                                                                                                                                 

                        Below poverty level                                                                                      

                                                                                                                                 

       Total in labor force....................................         10,597                 7,482                 5,998       

         Did not work during the year..........................          1,138                   502                   430       

         Worked during the year................................          9,459                 6,980                 5,568       

           Usual full-time workers.............................          5,624                 4,433                 3,678       

           Usual part-time workers.............................          3,835                 2,547                 1,890       

             Involuntary part-time workers.....................          1,471                 1,116                   903       

             Voluntary part-time workers.......................          2,364                 1,431                   986       

                                                                                                                                 

                          Poverty rate(1)                                                                                        

                                                                                                                                 

       Total in labor force....................................           7.5                   5.9                   5.4        

         Did not work during the year..........................          42.3                  46.3                  47.1        

         Worked during the year................................           6.8                   5.6                   5.0        

           Usual full-time workers.............................           5.1                   4.3                   3.8        

           Usual part-time workers.............................          12.9                  11.9                  12.3        

             Involuntary part-time workers.....................          26.8                  25.9                  26.6        

             Voluntary part-time workers.......................           9.8                   8.4                   8.2        

1 Number below the poverty level as a percent of the total in the labor force for 27 weeks or more.

Table 2. Persons in the labor force for 27 weeks or more: Poverty status by age, sex, race, and Hispanic origin, 1995 (Numbers in thousands)

                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                 

                                                                           Below poverty level             Poverty rate(1)       

                                                             Hispanic                                                            

               Age and sex             Total   White   Black  origin                                                             

                                                                       Total  White  Black Hispanic  Total  White  Black Hispanic

                                                                                            origin                        origin 

                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                 

         Total, 16 years and older... 126,020 106,837 13,946   11,405  7,482  5,438  1,710    1,709    5.9    5.1   12.3    15.0 

     16 to 19 years..................   4,603   4,028    455      450    519    378    128      110   11.3    9.4   28.0    24.4 

     20 to 24 years..................  11,890   9,847  1,488    1,589  1,313    988    268      295   11.0   10.0   18.0    18.6 

     25 to 34 years..................  32,712  27,136  4,064    3,880  2,329  1,660    576      595    7.1    6.1   14.2    15.3 

     35 to 44 years..................  35,264  29,713  4,051    3,043  1,899  1,358    446      451    5.4    4.6   11.0    14.8 

     45 to 54 years..................  25,415  21,893  2,519    1,542    895    632    218      169    3.5    2.9    8.7    10.9 

     55 to 64 years..................  12,352  10,786  1,105      771    445    355     66       83    3.6    3.3    5.9    10.8 

     65 years and older..............   3,784   3,433    264      129     81     67      8        6    2.1    2.0    3.1     4.9 

                                                                                                                                 

         Men, 16 years and older.....  68,663  59,095  6,762    6,912  3,828  3,023    636    1,108    5.6    5.1    9.4    16.0 

     16 to 19 years..................   2,402   2,121    222      279    229    162     58       67    9.5    7.7   26.2    24.0 

     20 to 24 years..................   6,373   5,341    753      981    676    559     95      194   10.6   10.5   12.6    19.8 

     25 to 34 years..................  18,159  15,319  2,010    2,520  1,213    959    205      421    6.7    6.3   10.2    16.7 

     35 to 44 years..................  19,055  16,368  1,899    1,758    983    775    156      272    5.2    4.7    8.2    15.5 

     45 to 54 years..................  13,495  11,741  1,200      833    440    318     95       97    3.3    2.7    7.9    11.6 

     55 to 64 years..................   6,950   6,156    550      453    258    219     26       53    3.7    3.6    4.8    11.8 

     65 years and older..............   2,229   2,049    127       88     30     30   -€          4    1.4    1.5   -€       4.7 

                                                                                                                                 

         Women, 16 years and older...  57,357  47,741  7,185    4,493  3,654  2,416  1,075      601    6.4    5.1   15.0    13.4 

     16 to 19 years..................   2,202   1,907    233      171    291    215     69       43   13.2   11.3   29.7    25.0 

     20 to 24 years..................   5,517   4,506    735      608    637    430    173      101   11.5    9.5   23.6    16.7 

     25 to 34 years..................  14,552  11,816  2,054    1,361  1,116    700    371      174    7.7    5.9   18.1    12.8 

     35 to 44 years..................  16,209  13,345  2,152    1,285    916    583    290      179    5.7    4.4   13.5    13.9 

     45 to 54 years..................  11,920  10,153  1,319      709    456    314    123       72    3.8    3.1    9.4    10.2 

     55 to 64 years..................   5,402   4,630    555      318    188    136     39       29    3.5    2.9    7.1     9.3 

     65 years and older..............   1,555   1,384    137       41     50     37      8        2    3.2    2.7    6.0    (2)  

1 Number below the poverty level as a percent of the total in the labor force for 27 weeks or more.

2 Data not shown where base is less than 75,000.

- Dash represents zero or rounds to zero.

NOTE: Detail for race and Hispanic-origin groups will not sum to totals because data for the "other races" group are not presented and Hispanics are included in both the white and black population groups.

Table 3. Persons in the labor force for 27 weeks or more: Poverty status by educational attainment, race, and sex, 1995 (Numbers in thousands)

                                                                                       Below poverty level          Poverty rate(1)     

              Educational attainment and race             Total     Men     Women                                                       

                                                                                                                                        

                                                                                     Total     Men     Women    Total     Men     Women 

                                                                                                                                        

                                                                                                                                        

         Total, 16 years and older.....................  126,020   68,663   57,357    7,482    3,828    3,654     5.9      5.6      6.4 

     Less than a high school diploma...................   16,188   10,032    6,156    2,788    1,631    1,157    17.2     16.3     18.8 

       Less than 1 year of high school.................    4,773    3,235    1,538    1,050      709      341    22.0     21.9     22.2 

       1-3 years of high school........................    9,995    5,908    4,087    1,541      821      720    15.4     13.9     17.6 

       4 years of high school, no diploma..............    1,420      889      531      198      102       96    13.9     11.5     18.0 

     High school graduates, no college.................   41,315   22,285   19,030    2,531    1,247    1,284     6.1      5.6      6.7 

     Some college, no degree...........................   25,701   13,327   12,374    1,317      546      771     5.1      4.1      6.2 

     Associate degree..................................   10,272    4,892    5,380      343      128      216     3.3      2.6      4.0 

     College graduates.................................   32,546   18,128   14,417      502      276      227     1.5      1.5      1.6 

                                                                                                                                        

         White, 16 years and older.....................  106,837   59,095   47,741    5,438    3,023    2,416     5.1      5.1      5.1 

     Less than a high school diploma...................   13,289    8,440    4,848    2,110    1,337      773    15.9     15.8     15.9 

       Less than 1 year of high school.................    4,045    2,812    1,233      896      624      272    22.2     22.2     22.1 

       1-3 years of high school........................    8,189    4,950    3,239    1,080      632      448    13.2     12.8     13.8 

       4 years of high school, no diploma..............    1,054      678      376      134       81       53    12.7     11.9     14.2 

     High school graduates, no college.................   34,961   18,952   16,009    1,785      950      835     5.1      5.0      5.2 

     Some college, no degree...........................   21,469   11,386   10,083      911      423      488     4.2      3.7      4.8 

     Associate degree..................................    8,763    4,267    4,496      242       97      146     2.8      2.3      3.2 

     College graduates.................................   28,355   16,050   12,306      390      217      173     1.4      1.4      1.4 

                                                                                                                                        

         Black, 16 years and older.....................   13,946    6,762    7,185    1,710      636    1,075    12.3      9.4     15.0 

     Less than a high school diploma...................    2,207    1,222      985      547      234      313    24.8     19.1     31.8 

       Less than 1 year of high school.................      463      285      179       97       59       38    21.0     20.7     21.5 

       1-3 years of high school........................    1,468      782      686      400      157      243    27.2     20.1     35.4 

       4 years of high school, no diploma..............      276      155      121       50       18       32    18.0     11.3     26.5 

     High school graduates, no college.................    5,187    2,707    2,479      668      246      422    12.9      9.1     17.0 

     Some college, no degree...........................    3,291    1,485    1,806      349      103      246    10.6      7.0     13.6 

     Associate degree..................................    1,082      445      637       85       25       60     7.9      5.6      9.4 

     College graduates.................................    2,179      903    1,276       62       27       34     2.8      3.0      2.7 

1 Number below the poverty level as a percent of the total in the labor force for 27 weeks or more.

Table 4. Persons in families and unrelated individuals: Poverty status and work experience, 1995 (Numbers in thousands)

                                                                                                                                      

                                                                                                                                      

                                              In married-couple families     In families maintained   In families maintained          

                                                                                    by women                  by men            Unre- 

       Poverty status and work     Total                                                                                        lated 

              experience          persons                                                                                       indi- 

                                            Hus-           Related   Other  House-  Related   Other  House-  Related   Other   viduals

                                            bands   Wives children relativ- holder children relativ- holder children relativ-         

                                                          under 18    es           under 18    es           under 18    es            

                                                                                                                                      

                                                                                                                                      

                                                                                                                                      

                TOTAL                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                      

           All persons(1)........ 199,925   52,953 53,596    5,002   16,986 12,993    1,918    9,742  3,543      366    3,427   39,399

       With labor force activity. 141,659   42,469 35,316    2,480   12,814  9,137      830    6,687  2,893      138    2,455   26,440

         1 to 26 weeks...........  15,639    1,533  4,049    1,496    2,966  1,037      522    1,133    188       89      393    2,233

         27 weeks or more........ 126,020   40,936 31,268      984    9,848  8,100      308    5,554  2,706       49    2,062   24,207

       With no labor force                                                                                                            

          activity...............  58,265   10,484 18,279    2,522    4,172  3,856    1,088    3,055    650      228      973   12,959

                                                                                                                                      

      At or above poverty level                                                                                                       

                                                                                                                                      

           All persons(1)........ 176,889   50,002 50,599    4,605   16,109  8,701    1,270    7,960  3,038      313    3,103   31,190

       With labor force activity. 131,062   40,614 34,336    2,378   12,437  6,848      667    5,814  2,531      130    2,275   23,032

         1 to 26 weeks...........  12,524    1,339  3,681    1,423    2,833    343      412      831    113       82      329    1,137

         27 weeks or more........ 118,539   39,275 30,654      955    9,604  6,504      256    4,983  2,418       48    1,946   21,895

       With no labor force                                                                                                            

          activity...............  45,827    9,388 16,264    2,227    3,672  1,853      602    2,146    507      183      827    8,157

                                                                                                                                      

         Below poverty level                                                                                                          

                                                                                                                                      

           All persons(1)........  23,035    2,951  2,996      397      877  4,292      649    1,782    505       53      325    8,209

       With labor force activity.  10,597    1,855    981      102      377  2,289      163      873    362        8      179    3,408

         1 to 26 weeks...........   3,115      194    367       73      133    694      111      303     74        7       64    1,096

         27 weeks or more........   7,482    1,661    613       29      244  1,595       52      571    288        1      116    2,312

       With no labor force                                                                                                            

          activity...............  12,438    1,095  2,015      295      500  2,003      486      909    143       45      145    4,801

                                                                                                                                      

           Poverty rate(2)                                                                                                            

                                                                                                                                      

           All persons(1)........   11.5      5.6     5.6     7.9      5.2    33.0    33.8     18.3    14.3    14.5      9.5     20.8 

       With labor force activity.    7.5      4.4     2.8     4.1      2.9    25.1    19.6     13.1    12.5     5.8      7.3     12.9 

         1 to 26 weeks...........   19.9     12.7     9.1     4.9      4.5    66.9    21.2     26.7    39.7     8.3     16.2     49.1 

         27 weeks or more........    5.9      4.1     2.0     2.9      2.5    19.7    17.0     10.3    10.6    (3)       5.6      9.5 

       With no labor force                                                                                                            

          activity...............   21.3     10.4    11.0    11.7     12.0    51.9    44.6     29.8    22.0    19.7     14.9     37.1 

1 Data on families include persons in primary families and unrelated subfamilies.

2 Number below the poverty level as a percent of the total in the labor force for 27 weeks or more.

3 Data not shown where base is less than 75,000.

Table 5. Primary families: Poverty status, presence of related children, and work experience of family members in the labor force for 27 weeks or more, 1995 (Numbers in thousands)

                                                                                                                   


                       Characteristic                                    At or above   Below poverty     Poverty   

                                                        Total families  poverty level      level         rate(1)   

                                                                                                                   

                                                                                                                   

             Total primary families....................      57,262         53,254          4,008           7.0    

                                                                                                                   

     With related children under 18....................      33,176         29,759          3,417          10.3    

     Without children..................................      24,086         23,495            591           2.5    

                                                                                                                   

     With one member in the labor force................      23,091         19,844          3,247          14.1    

     With two or more members in the labor force.......      34,171         33,410            761           2.2    

       With two members................................      28,623         27,941            682           2.4    

       With three or more members......................       5,548          5,469             79           1.4    

                                                                                                                   

     Married-couple families:                                                                                      

                                                                                                                   

       With related children under 18..................      25,104         23,542          1,562           6.2    

       Without children................................      19,790         19,440            350           1.8    

                                                                                                                   

       With one member in the labor force..............      14,480         13,073          1,406           9.7    

         Husband.......................................      11,149          9,977          1,172          10.5    

         Wife..........................................       2,613          2,436            177           6.8    

         Relative......................................         718            660             57           8.0    

       With two or more members in the labor force.....      30,414         29,908            506           1.7    

         With two members..............................      25,561         25,109            452           1.8    

         With three or more members....................       4,853          4,800             53           1.1    

                                                                                                                   

     Families maintained by women:                                                                                 

                                                                                                                   

       With related children under 18..................       6,331          4,738          1,593          25.2    

       Without children................................       2,964          2,785            179           6.1    

                                                                                                                   

       With one member in the labor force..............       6,624          5,061          1,563          23.6    

         Householder...................................       5,367          4,053          1,314          24.5    

         Relative......................................       1,257          1,008            249          19.8    

       With two or more members in the labor force.....       2,671          2,462            209           7.8    

                                                                                                                   

     Families maintained by men:                                                                                   

                                                                                                                   

       With related children under 18..................       1,742          1,480            262          15.0    

       Without children................................       1,332          1,270             62           4.6    

                                                                                                                   

       With one member in the labor force..............       1,987          1,710            278          14.0    

         Householder...................................       1,677          1,436            242          14.4    

         Relative......................................         310            274             36          11.6    

       With two or more members in the labor force.....       1,086          1,040             46           4.3    

1 Number below the poverty level as a percent of the total in the labor force for 27 weeks or more.

NOTE: Data relate to primary families with at least one member in the labor force for 27 weeks or more.

Table 6. Unrelated individuals in the labor force for 27 weeks or more: Poverty status by age, sex, race, Hispanic origin, and living arrangement, 1995 (Numbers in thousands)

                                                                                                                                 

                  Characteristic                      Total         At or above poverty  Below poverty level    Poverty rate(1)  

                                                                           level                                                 

                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                 

                   Age and sex                                                                                                   

                                                                                                                                 

            Total unrelated individuals......         24,207               21,895                2,312                 9.5       

     16 to 19 years..........................            452                  261                  191                42.3       

     20 to 24 years..........................          3,145                2,566                  579                18.4       

     25 to 64 years..........................         19,603               18,097                1,506                 7.7       

     65 years and older......................          1,007                  972                   35                 3.5       

                                                                                                                                 

     Men.....................................         13,724               12,445                1,279                 9.3       

     Women...................................         10,483                9,450                1,033                 9.9       

                                                                                                                                 

             Race and Hispanic origin                                                                                            

                                                                                                                                 

     White...................................         20,485               18,658                1,827                 8.9       

        Men..................................         11,626               10,619                1,007                 8.7       

        Women................................          8,860                8,039                  820                 9.3       

                                                                                                                                 

     Black...................................          2,876                2,465                  411                14.3       

        Men..................................          1,610                1,374                  236                14.6       

        Women................................          1,266                1,091                  175                13.8       

                                                                                                                                 

     Hispanic origin.........................          1,882                1,542                  340                18.0       

        Men..................................          1,329                1,080                  249                18.7       

        Women................................            553                  462                   91                16.4       

                                                                                                                                 

                Living arrangement                                                                                               

                                                                                                                                 

     Living alone............................         13,169               12,292                  877                 6.7       

     Living with others......................         11,038                9,604                1,435                13.0       

1 Number below the poverty level as a percent of the total in the labor force for 27 weeks or more.

NOTE: Detail for race and Hispanic-origin groups will not sum to totals because data for the "other races" group are not presented and Hispanics are included in both the white and black population groups.

Table 7. Persons in the labor force for 27 weeks or more: Poverty status and labor market problems of full-time wage and salary workers, 1995 (Numbers in thousands)

                                                                                            At or above     Below       Poverty  

                     Poverty status and labor market problems                     Total       poverty      poverty      rate(1)  

                                                                                               level        level                

                                                                                                                                 

                                                                                                                                 

          Total, full-time wage and salary workers...........................     97,931       94,020        3,912         4.0   

                                                                                                                                 

     No unemployment, involuntary part-time employment, or low earnings(2)...     77,013       76,472          541          .7   

                                                                                                                                 

     Unemployment only.......................................................      6,289        5,770          519         8.3   

     Involuntary part-time employment only...................................      2,650        2,595           56         2.1   

     Low earnings only.......................................................      7,250        5,729        1,520        21.0   

                                                                                                                                 

     Unemployment and involuntary part-time employment.......................      1,199        1,101           99         8.2   

     Unemployment and low earnings...........................................      2,053        1,307          745        36.3   

     Involuntary part-time employment and low earnings.......................        968          729          239        24.7   

                                                                                                                                 

     Unemployment, involuntary part-time employment, and low earnings........        509          317          192        37.7   

1 Number below the poverty level as a percent of the total in the labor force for 27 weeks or more.

2 The low earnings threshold in 1995 was $224.00 per week.


These tables are online: http://stats.bls.gov


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