Category: Income

Resource Category Topic Type
A Profile of Youth Poverty and Opportunity in Southwestern Minnesota
Like many rural communities across the United States, Southwestern Minnesota (hereafter SW Minnesota; see Box 1) has an aging population, evidenced by a growing share of seniors and a declining share of children and young adults, particularly among the non-Hispanic white population.1 As the population ages, it is also becoming more diverse, as racial-ethnic minority population is far younger, on average, than the non-Hispanic white population and contains a disproportionate share of children and young adults. Much of the growth in diversity is driven by an expanding population of immigrants. These residents, typically in their young working-age years, often establish themselves in SW Minnesota and go on to have families of their own. Research on the rural outmigration of the young and working non-Hispanic white population indicates that it is often the most promising youth and young adults who leave and seek opportunities elsewhere.2 At the same time, the aging population puts pressure on scarce resources, and the immigrant populations often face challenges including low education, lack of English language proficiency, and the inability to garner work authorization. It is against this demographic backdrop that we explore challenges and opportunities for youth in SW Minnesota. We analyze data on various demographic, economic, educational, and social indicators to gain a better understanding of the circumstances youth face and the opportunity available in SW Minnesota. Wherever possible, we compare conditions in SW Minnesota to the state as a whole and to the entire nation.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Education, Income, Poverty Publication
Carsey Perspectives: Innovative Financing for Community Businesses
Business owners seeking to start or expand a small business have limited options for financing. They can go to a bank for a loan, but they may have trouble qualifying for the loan due to the age of the business, absence of collateral, lack of equity in the business, thin margins, or other factors. While online business lenders may offer faster response times and lower underwriting hurdles, they often do so in exchange for exorbitant rates and reduced ability to customize their financing or add broader value to the business beyond the money. Business owners could try going to venture capitalists for equity, but venture capitalists and angel investors will demand some control over the company and need an exit strategy, generally requiring that the company be sold. The company might also not have a fast enough growth curve to interest a venture capitalist. Raising money through a crowdfunding platform, such as Kickstarter, is another option. But until recently, crowdfunding has been limited to raising donations, not investments, through such strategies.
Center for Impact Finance Community Development Finance, Income Publication
Data Snapshot: Poorer Working Families With Young Children Are Unlikely to Afford Child Care
Low-income families with working parents face significant burdens paying for child care, which can function as a barrier to work and often means parents must rely on child care arrangements that are less formal and less stable.1 Amid national concerns about the high cost of child care, it is important to keep this issue at the forefront. Given the especially high costs of care for very young children, this snapshot highlights the child care costs faced by families with a child under age 3. Figure 1 shows the share of families paying for child care (bottom sections) by their income level. As a family’s income-to-poverty ratio rises, they are more likely to pay for child care. Poorer families who do pay for child care are much more often paying over 7 percent of their income on child care, the current benchmark of affordability from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.2
Vulnerable Families Research Program Child Care, Family, Income Publication
Families Continue to Rely on Wives As Breadwinners Post-Recession
This brief presents an analysis of the increased role employed wives played in family economic stability prior to, during, and after the Great Recession, focusing on changes in the contribution of employed wives’ earnings to family earnings by state, region, metropolitan areas, and nonmetro residence.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Employment, Family, Income Publication
Gaps in Youth Opportunity by State
Public discourse on economics in the United States, and around the world, often focuses on rising income and wealth inequality. The “Occupy” movement drew great attention to the rising fortunes of the top one percent while middle- and lower-income Americans lost ground. Vast scholarly, political, and media attention is focused on issues of growing inequality and implications for broader societal cultural shifts as well as economic growth. Less attention has been paid to the changing landscape of opportunities enabling youth to get ahead, to improve their living situation over that of their parents through hard work and determination. Such social mobility has remained fairly stable for generations, but recent evidence across a range of indicia suggests growing gaps in the opportunities available to children in lower socioeconomic status families versus those in families of higher socioeconomic strata. This pushes the American Dream—or the idea that anyone who works hard, and plays by the rules, can get ahead—further out of reach. Such inequality is a potential threat to our social structure as well as our economic well-being.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Children, Education, Employment, Income, Poverty, Young Adults Publication
New England Has the Highest Increase in Income Disparity in the Nation
Income inequality in New England is rising at the highest rate in the nation, this brief finds. Between 1989 and 2004, the region experienced the largest increase in income inequality in the country, due to both growth among top earners and the hollowing out of the middle class caused by significant changes in the nation's economy.
New Hampshire, Vulnerable Families Research Program Income, Inequality, New England Publication
Recessions Accelerate Trend of Wives as Breadwinners
This brief, Recessions Accelerate Trend of Wives as Breadwinners, investigates the increased role employed wives played in family economic stability prior to, during, and in the two years after the Great Recession, and makes comparisons to the 1990-1991 and 2001 recessions.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Employment, Family, Gender, Income Publication
The Interaction Between the Minimum Wage and the Federal EITC
Increases in the minimum wage are widely assumed to be beneficial for low-income workers, but it is important to consider the effect an increase might have on eligibility for other benefits, particularly the federal Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC). This fact sheet examines the interaction between the minimum wage and the EITC to determine whether a minimum wage increase would produce gains in the sum of earnings plus EITC dollars for low-income workers.1
Vulnerable Families Research Program Employment, Income, Safety Net, Tax, Wages Publication
Underemployment in Urban and Rural America, 2005-2012
Author Justin Young reports that underemployment (or involuntary part-time work) rates doubled during the second year of the recession, reaching roughly 6.5 percent in 2009. This increase was equally steep in both rural and urban places. By March of 2012, underemployment was slightly lower in rural places (4.8 percent) compared to urban places (5.3 percent).
Vulnerable Families Research Program Employment, Income, Rural, Urban Publication
Walking Builds Community Cohesion: Survey of Two New Hampshire Communities Looks at Social Capital and Walkability
This brief reports the results of a survey conducted in 2009 of approximately 2,000 households in Portsmouth and Manchester, New Hampshire, to examine the connection between walkability and social capital.
New Hampshire Community, Income, New Hampshire Publication
Who Cares for the Sick Kids? Parents’ Access to Paid Time to Care for a Sick Child
This brief analyzes employed parents’ access to five or more paid sick days annually to care for a sick child in 2008.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Children, Family, Health, Income, Wages Publication
“My Advice…Is Get Out of Town”
In this brief, we use interview and focus group data to explore how residents view the economic opportunities in two rural Northern New England counties and how these opportunities are related to migration patterns.
Vulnerable Families Research Program Economic Development, Employment, Income, New England Publication