Presentation on theme: "Government and Households Chapter 9 What makes poor ‘poor’? What should government do?"— Presentation transcript:
Government and Households Chapter 9 What makes poor ‘poor’? What should government do?
How do you define poverty? Poverty is defined in terms of income. Depends on the number of people in a household and whether they live in a farm / nonfarm household.
2004 HHS Poverty Guidelines Size of Family Unit 48 Contiguous States and D.C.AlaskaHawaii 1$ 9,310$11,630$10,700 212,49015,61014,360 315,67019,59018,020 418,85023,57021,680 522,03027,55025,340 625,21031,53029,000 728,39035,51032,660 831,57039,49036,320 For each additional person, add 3,180 3,980 3,660 SOURCE: Federal Register, Vol. 69, No. 30, February 13, 2004, pp. 7336-7338.
What percentage live in poverty? The number of people below the official poverty thresholds numbered 35.9 million in 2003, or 1.3 million more than in 2002, for a 2003 poverty rate of 12.5 percent. Although up from 2002, this rate is below the average of the 1980s and 1990s.
Where is poverty in the US? Real median household income remained unchanged between 2002 and 2003 in three of the four census regions — –Northeast ($46,742) –Midwest ($44,732) –West ($46,820).
Where is poverty in the US The exception was the South, where income declined 1.5 percent. The South continued to have the lowest median household income of all four regions ($39,823).
Who is affected by our economic situation? Native households had a real median income in 2003 ($44,347), not different from that in 2002. Foreign-born households experienced a real decline of 3.5 percent to $37,499.
Who is affected by our economic situation? Real median earnings of men age 15 and older who worked full-time, year- round in 2003 ($40,668) remained unchanged from 2002. Women with similar work experience saw their earnings decline — 0.6 percent to $30,724 — their first annual decline since 1995.
Who is affected by our economic situation? As a result, the ratio of female-to-male earnings for full-time, year-round workers was 76 cents for every dollar in 2003, down from 77 cents for every dollar in 2002.
Measuring Income Inequality Lorenz Curve Gini Index
Lorenz Curve The line of equality: –Each 20% should control 20% of the income in the US. –The further from the line of equality, the Lorenz Curve shows
Gini Index Measures the degree of income inequality. Area enclosed by the Lorenz Curve and the diagonal.
Gini Index when the Gini Index is g, and the society can be divided into the rich layer and the poor layer by r : 1- r, the share of the rich layer income becomes r+g, and it makes us know the degree of inequality.
Standard of Gini Index -0.1 There is an artificial background for leveling. 0.1-0.2 Though considerably equal, there is an anxiety to obstruct the effort to the improvement. 0.2-0.3 Usual distribution type that exists in general in society 0.3-0.4 Though there are some differences, there is also a desirable respect in the improvement through competition. 0.4-0.5The difference is serious. 0.5- The improvement is required except under special circumstances
What does government do to reduce poverty? Unequal distribution of income Differences in technology Differences in employee skills –Dual Labor Market
What does government do to reduce poverty? Lack of human capital –Education and Skills Discrimination –Affirmative Action Inability to work and earn income –Age, disabled, health –SS, SSI, Medicare, Medicaid
What is the answer to poverty? Supplementary Security Income: - Designed to help poor people who are aged, blind, disabled. Transfer payments – no goods or services exchanged. –Welfare and SS examples TANF: Temporary Assistance for Needy Families
What is the answer to poverty? Workfare – required welfare recipients to work at public service hours a month for pay. –Includes job training Earned Income Tax Credit –Federal tax credit for poor families. Food Stamps – certificates in exchange for food. Medicaid – helps long term medical needs.
What does the government do to help older Americans? Social Security Medicare Medicaid Social Insurance – programs to maintain people’s incomes so that they do not fall into poverty.
What does the government do to help older Americans? Social Security Reform Defined benefits retirement plan Individual retirement account (IRA) special tax treatment as long as funds are not withdrawn until retirement. Defined contributions retirement plan Participants contribute amount of income. 401K plans
What is the role of government in protecting consumers and workers? Consumer Protection –FDA (Food and Drug Administration) –CPSC (Consumer Product safety Commission) –FTC (Federal Trade Commission) –SEC (Securities and Exchange Commission)
What role does government play in protecting workers? Worker Protection –OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration)