U.S. poverty jumps the most in 60 years

Author: Leigh Lynes

Of the various measures of the coronavirus pandemic's comet strike on the U.S. economy, one especially reveals the size of the crater: Over a six-month period, nearly 8 million Americans have tumbled into poverty.

The nation's poverty rate in November jumped to 11.7%, up 2.4 percentage points from 9.6% in June — the biggest one-year increase in the 60 years that the government has been keeping numbers, according to new research from three universities. James X. Sullivan, a professor of economics at Notre Dame, and Bruce D. Meyer, an expert in poverty and inequality and professor at the University of Chicago's Harris School of Public Policy, are tracking the nearly real-time data on a dashboard that registers the economic impact of COVID-19.

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