Growing Poverty in America - by Stephen Lendman
The newly released US Census report on "Income, Poverty, and Health Insurance Coverage in the United States: 2009" way understates a growing problem as do most other government data. Unemployment for one, the Labor Department's headlined (U-3) 9.6% masks the true 22% based on 1980 calculations.
With America in economic crisis, the new Census report portends much worse ahead under a president and Congress doing little to address it, the Brookings Institution Isabel Sawhill expecting the problem to "get much worse long before it gets better." More on the new data below. First, some other confirmations of economic trouble.
The Federal Reserve's September-released Flow of Funds report shows household Q 2 2010 net worth plunged $1.5 trillion because of a $0.9 trillion drop in corporate equities and a $0.7 reduction in pension fund holdings. Overall, total household financial assets declined by $1.7 trillion to $43.7 trillion, a trend expected to continue for some time.
On September 15, RealtyTrac reported another disturbing one, saying:
"The number of homes taken back by lenders hit a new record high last month:" 95,364 foreclosures, about 2% higher than the previous May 2010 peak. According to its CEO, James J. Saccacio:
"The trend lines of decreasing default notices and increasing bank repossessions converged in August, with virtually the same number (of both) - a clear indication that the clogged foreclosure pipeline is being carefully managed on both ends by lenders and servicers." However, they can't mask a housing depression, the worst since the 1930s, showing no signs of ebbing. In Q 1, 2010, one of every seven mortgages was either delinquent or in foreclosure, now likely even more.
On September 9, Bloomberg writers Bob Willis and Vincent Del Giudice headlined, "Record Plunge in US Consumer Credit Signals Weakened Spending," saying: