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Minnesota Milestones 2010: Poverty Rate

How is Minnesota doing?
Keep an eye out for these images to quickly tell which way the trend is going:
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Undesirable or negative
Thumbs maybe
No change, or not enough data to draw conclusions
Thumbs up
Desirable or positive.

Indicator 43: Poverty Rate

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Goal: All Minnesotans will have the economic means to maintain a reasonable standard of living.
Rationale: Measuring the percentage of Minnesotans who live in poverty gives an indication of how many Minnesotans are not financially able to maintain a minimum standard of living. Milestones respondents indicated that incomes must be well above the poverty level in order to be considered adequate.
About this indicator: Poverty rates have risen since 2000 as the economy has slumped. The percent of Minnesotans in poverty decreased from 10.2 percent in 1990 to 7.9 percent in 2000. Since then, poverty rates have shown an upward trend. In 2008 the rate was 9.6 percent.

The 2008 federal poverty threshold for a family of four was $21,834. Many Minnesotans with incomes above the poverty line still have difficulty making ends meet.

Minnesota poverty rate

Minnesota poverty rate
Minnesota poverty rate,
1990 10.2%
2000 7.9%
2005 9.2%
2006 9.8%
2007 9.5%
2008 9.6%
For comparison: In 2008, Minnesota had the 9th lowest poverty rate among all states. The national poverty rate was 13.3 percent.

The Current Population Survey also provides poverty data. In 2008, the Minnesota poverty rate was 9.3 percent using the traditional poverty measure and 10.1 percent in the alternative CE-based measure.

Things to think about: The federal government is considering changes in the way poverty is measured. The current measure is often criticized because it does not account for shifts in spending patterns and does not factor in noncash benefits such as food stamps.
Related 2002 Milestones indicator:
Local data:

Milestones is a product of the Minnesota State Demographic Center, a division of the Department of Administration