Indicators of Welfare Dependence: Annual Report to Congress, 2003. Economic Security Risk Factor 5. Poverty Spells

03/01/2003

Figure ECON 5. Percentage of Poverty Spells for Individuals Entering Poverty during the 1993 and 1996 SIPP Panels, by Length of Spell

Percentage of Poverty Spells for Individuals Entering Poverty during the 1993 and 1996 SIPP Panels, by Length of Spell

Source: Unpublished data from the SIPP, 1993 and 1996 panels.

  • Half (51 percent) of all poverty spells that began during the 1996 SIPP panel ended within four months and 70 percent ended within one year. Only 11 percent of all such spells were longer than 20 months.
  • Spells of poverty that began between 1993 and 1995 were slightly longer; 47 percent ended within four months and 16 percent were longer than 20 months.
  • Poverty spells among adults age 65 and older were more likely to last longer than 20 months (17 percent) than spells among other age groups, as shown in Table ECON 5a.

Table ECON 5a. Percentage of Poverty Spells for Individuals Entering Poverty during the 1996 SIPP Panel, by Length of Spell, Race/Ethnicity, and Age

  Spells <=4 months Spells 5-12 months Spells 13-20 months Spells >20 months
Note: Spell length categories are not mutually exclusive. Spells separated by only 1 month are not considered separate spells. Due to the length of the observation period, actual spell lengths for spells that lasted more than 20 months cannot be observed.
Source: Unpublished data from the SIPP, 1996 panel.
All Persons 51.3 29.0 8.3 11.4
Racial/Ethnic Categories 51.3 29.0 8.3 11.4
Non-Hispanic White 54.6 28.1 7.6 9.7
Non-Hispanic Black 45.5 27.7 10.1 16.7
Hispanic 46.8 32.9 8.6 11.7
Age Categories
Ages 0 to 5 Years 46.8 29.6 10.8 12.9
Ages 6 to 10 Years 47.1 29.7 9.2 14.0
Ages 11 to 15 Years 49.5 30.9 7.9 11.7
Women Ages 16-64 years 50.7 29.3 8.5 11.5
Men Ages 16-64 Years 55.7 28.9 7.0 8.4
Adults Age 65 Years and Older 51.1 23.8 7.7 17.4

Table ECON 5b Percentage of Poverty Spells for Individuals Entering Poverty during the 1993 and 1996 SIPP Panels, by Length of Spell and Year

  Spells <=4 months Spells 5-12 months Spells 13-20 months Spells >20 months
Source: Unpublished data from the SIPP, 1993 and 1996 panels.
1993 Panel All Persons 47.3 28.1 8.9 15.7
1996 Panel All Persons 51.3 29.0 8.3 11.4

 

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