People without income. Worrying trends.

The U.S. Census Bureau conducts a Current Population Surveys (CPS) every March. The CPS includes a number of questions related to personal incomes. A new questionnaire   was introduced in 1994 and many detailed tables have been published since. People not reporting any personal income during the previous year are considered as people without income. We have plotted the share of people without income as a function of time for various age groups. In all groups, the share has been growing over time. The most prominent increase was observed in the youngest group between 0 and 9 years of work experience marked in Figure 1 as “5”. (All other groups are marked by the relevant central points of 5 years bins of work experience.) The share grew from 25% to 38% between 1994 and 2009, i.e. by 0.9% per year, as the slope in Figure 1 shows. This is a worrying tendency.  

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