State Household Income Dropped Double Digits in Recession

Coloradans have not recovered yet from the Great Recession in terms of household incomes and the number of those afflicted by poverty.

The U.S. Census Bureau’s 2012 American Community Survey, released earlier this fall, found that the median household income in the state shrank by about 13 percent between 2008 and 2012, from $65,054 to $56,765 in 2012. The numbers are adjusted for inflation.

U.S. Department of Commerce - Bureau of the Census

U.S. Department of Commerce - Bureau of the Census

While income was shrinking, poverty rates, perhaps not surprisingly, went in the opposite direction. The overall poverty in Colorado jumped from 11.4 percent to 13.7 percent between 2008, when the recession deepened, and 2012. The percent of children under 18 living in poverty rose to 18.5 percent, or about one in every six, from 15 percent in 2008.

The federal poverty line for a family of three is currently set at about $19,500.

Among other findings by the survey are fewer married residents in the state, just about 50 percent, compared to 52 percent four years earlier.

The percent of foreign born residents also fell slightly, from 10.1 percent to 9.8 percent. A smaller percent are from Latin American, 53.6 percent in 2012 vs. 57.6 percent in 2008, with a larger percent from Asia, 22.1 percent in 2012 as opposed to 19.6 percent in 2008.

The percent of Coloradans with high school degrees rose from 88.9 percent to 90.6 percent and the percent with college degrees increased from 35.6 percent to 37.7 percent, the survey found.

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