Poverty in the U.S.

An op ed by Angus Deaton in the January 24, 2018 edition of the New York Times, entitled “The U.S. Can No Longer Hide From Its Deep Poverty Problem,” discusses the numbers of U.S. citizens who live in poverty as deep as those in developing nations.

Poverty 2018

Graphic, New York Times

“When we compare absolute poverty in the United States with absolute poverty in India, or other poor countries, we should be using $4 in the United States and $1.90 in India.

Once we do this, there are 5.3 million Americans who are absolutely poor by global standards. This is a small number compared with the one for India, for example, but it is more than in Sierra Leone (3.2 million) or Nepal (2.5 million)…”

The graph above depicts the number of people who live on $4 or less per day and where the U.S. poor sit in relation to the poor in other Western countries.. In the U.S. the plight of the poor is exacerbated by lack of affordable housing. These costs are usually missed by World Bank estimates.

Angus Deaton is a professor of economics and international affairs emeritus at Princeton University, the presidential professor of economics at the University of Southern California and the 2015 Nobel laureate in economics.

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