Child poverty, by age (5-year estimates)

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Definitions: This indicator represents the number of children ages 0 through 17 who are living in families with incomes below the federal poverty threshold by two age groups: 0 through 4 and 5 through 17. 

The denominator for the percentages is the total child population in each respective age group for whom poverty status is determined in respective geographic areas. Children for whom poverty status is determined include children living in households where they are related to the householder by birth, marriage, or adoption. Thus, children living in foster care or in a group/institutional setting are excluded from this indicator.

Data Source: U.S. Census Bureau: 1980 Census; 1990 Census, Summary Tape File 4A, Table PB100; Census 2000, Summary File 3 (SF3), Table P87; and the American Community Survey (ACS) 5-Year Estimates, Table B17001.

Footnotes: The federal poverty thresholds are updated each year by the U.S. Census Bureau and were established in 1964 using guidelines set by the Social Security Administration. Current thresholds can be found here. GEOGRAPHY - Data reflect the child’s place of residence. DATE - Census data reflect April 1 of reference year. The ACS data reflect a 5-year pooled estimate. That is, the estimate is the result of data being continuously collected nearly every day for five years. LIMITATIONS - Characteristics for geographic areas experiencing dynamic change due to things such as an environmental catastrophe (e.g., flood) or a plant closing will be mitigated since these estimates cover five calendar years of data. Caution is needed when using the multiyear estimates for estimating year-to-year change in a particular characteristic. This is because four of the five years in the 5-year estimate overlap with the next year’s estimate. Ideally, trend analysis with multiyear estimates should be done using estimates from non-overlapping periods (i.e., 2006-2010 and 2011-2015).
 
Data are based on a sample and are subject to sampling variability. The degree of uncertainty for an estimate arising from sampling variability is represented here through the use of a margin of error. The value shown here is the 90 percent margin of error. The margin of error can be interpreted roughly as providing a 90 percent probability that the interval defined by the estimate plus or minus the margin of error (the lower and upper confidence bounds) contains the true value. The larger the margin of error, the less confidence one should have that the reported results are close to the true value. Use caution when drawing conclusions based on small numbers, as smaller samples yield larger margins of error. Margins of error corresponding to a 90 percent confidence interval for each estimate can be found at Child poverty, by age (5-year estimates).