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Indicator 4 Snapshot: Children Living in Poverty for Racial/Ethnic Subgroups
(Last Updated: July 2017)

Among Hispanic subgroups in 2014, the percentage of children under age 18 living in poverty ranged from 12 percent to 42 percent. Among Asian subgroups, the percentage of children living in poverty ranged from 6 percent to 52 percent.

While the indicator Children Living in Poverty uses data from the Current Population Survey (CPS) to present poverty rates, this snapshot uses data from the American Community Survey (ACS) and may differ from data shown in other indicators. The ACS includes a broader representation of American society by including people in institutions—such as hospitals, prisons, and the military—in addition to people in households. Therefore, the ACS allows for more precision in presenting data on smaller subsets of the population, such as American Indians/Alaska Natives and Pacific Islanders. It also allows for the reporting of poverty rates for many specific Hispanic and Asian subgroups, including, for example, the Mexican, Puerto Rican, Chinese, and Asian Indian subgroups. The percentage of children under age 18 living in poverty1 is estimated using the official poverty measure.


Figure 4.1a. Percentage of children under age 18 living in poverty, by race/ethnicity: 2014

Figure 4.1a. Percentage of children under age 18 living in poverty, by race/ethnicity: 2014

1 Includes persons reporting American Indian alone, persons reporting Alaska Native alone, and persons from American Indian and/or Alaska Native tribes specified or not specified.
NOTE: Data shown are based only on related children in a family; that is, all children in the household who are related to the householder by birth, marriage, or adoption (except a child who is the spouse of the householder). The householder is the person (or one of the people) who owns or rents (maintains) the housing unit. This figure includes only children related to the householder. It excludes unrelated children and householders who are themselves under the age of 18. Race categories exclude persons of Hispanic ethnicity.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Commerce, Census Bureau, American Community Survey (ACS), 2014. See Digest of Education Statistics 2015, table 102.60.


In 2014, about 21 percent of children under age 18 were living in poverty. The percentage of children living in poverty varied across racial/ethnic groups. The percentage for Black children living in poverty (38 percent) was higher than the percentages for children of any other racial/ethnic group. American Indian/Alaska Native children had the second highest percentage of children living in poverty across racial/ethnic groups (35 percent). The percentages of Hispanic and Pacific Islander children living in poverty were not measurably different from each other, but they were higher than the percentages for children of Two or more races (22 percent), White children (12 percent), and Asian children (12 percent).


Figure 4.2a. Percentage of children under age 18 living in poverty, by selected Hispanic subgroups: 2014

Figure 4.2a. Percentage of children under age 18 living in poverty, by selected Hispanic subgroups: 2014

1 Includes other Central American subgroups not shown separately.
NOTE: Data shown are based only on related children in a family; that is, all children in the household who are related to the householder by birth, marriage, or adoption (except a child who is the spouse of the householder). The householder is the person (or one of the people) who owns or rents (maintains) the housing unit. This figure includes only children related to the householder. It excludes unrelated children and householders who are themselves under the age of 18.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Commerce, Census Bureau, American Community Survey (ACS), 2014. See Digest of Education Statistics 2015, table 102.60.


In 2014, about 32 percent of Hispanic children under age 18 were living in poverty. The percentages of the Hispanic subgroups of Mexican (33 percent), Guatemalan (40 percent), and Honduran children (42 percent) living in poverty were higher than the overall Hispanic percentage. The percentages of Dominican and Puerto Rican children living in poverty were not measurably different from the overall Hispanic percentage. The percentages of children living in poverty in the other Hispanic subgroups were lower than the overall Hispanic percentage, ranging from 12 percent for Peruvian children to 28 percent for Salvadoran children.


Figure 4.3a. Percentage of children under age 18 living in poverty, by selected Asian subgroups: 2014

Figure 4.3a. Percentage of children under age 18 living in poverty, by selected Asian subgroups: 2014

! Interpret data with caution. The coefficient of variation (CV) for this estimate is between 30 and 50 percent.
1 Includes Taiwanese.
2 In addition to the subgroups shown, also includes Sri Lankan.
3 Consists of Indonesian and Malaysian.
NOTE: Data shown are based only on related children in a family; that is, all children in the household who are related to the householder by birth, marriage, or adoption (except a child who is the spouse of the householder). The householder is the person (or one of the people) who owns or rents (maintains) the housing unit. This figure includes only children related to the householder. It excludes unrelated children and householders who are themselves under the age of 18. Race categories exclude persons of Hispanic ethnicity. Although rounded numbers are displayed, the figures are based on unrounded estimates.
SOURCE: U.S. Department of Commerce, Census Bureau, American Community Survey (ACS), 2014. See Digest of Education Statistics 2015, table 102.60.


About 12 percent of Asian children under age 18 were living in poverty in 2014. The percentages of children in poverty were higher than the overall Asian percentage in many of the Asian subgroups, ranging from 15 percent for Vietnamese children to 52 percent for Bhutanese children. The percentages living in poverty for Chinese children and Korean children were not measurably different from the overall Asian percentage. The percentages living in poverty for Asian Indian (6 percent), Filipino (6 percent), and Japanese (7 percent) children were lower than the overall Asian percentage.

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1 In this indicator, data on household income and the number of people living in the household are combined with the poverty threshold, published by the Census Bureau, to determine the poverty status of children. Data shown are based only on related children in a family; that is, all children in the household who are related to the householder by birth, marriage, or adoption (except a child who is the spouse of the householder). The householder is the person (or one of the people) who owns or rents (maintains) the housing unit. This indicator includes only children related to the householder. It excludes unrelated children and householders who are themselves under the age of 18. In 2014, the poverty threshold for a family of four with two related children under 18 years old was $24,036.