Thursday, December 11, 2008

Even before downturn, many were struggling - Economy in Turmoil- msnbc.com

* Median household income dropped in 79 percent of the cities and towns. Incomes dropped in the wealthiest communities as well as the poorest. Charleston, Ill., home to Eastern Illinois University, saw the biggest drop — 31 percent — to a median household income of just under $21,000. Nationally, incomes dropped by 4.3 percent during the period, to $50,007.
* The poverty rate increased in 70 percent of the cities and towns. Athens, Ohio, home to Ohio University, had the highest poverty rate, at 52.3 percent, in the 2005-2007 period. Nationally, the poverty rate increased from 12.4 percent to 13.3 percent since the start of the decade.
* The unemployment rate increased in 71 percent of the cities and towns. Muskegon, Mich., a city of about 40,000 near Lake Michigan, had the highest unemployment rate, at 22.1 percent. Nationally, the unemployment rate increased from about 4 percent in 2000 to 6.6 percent in the 2005-2007 period.
* Median home values increased in 92 percent of the cities and towns studied — doubling and tripling in many cities, mainly in California. Nationally, the median home value increased 26 percent, to $181,800.It’s not surprising that many communities were doing better in 2000 than they were mid-decade, said Scott Hoyt, senior director of consumer economics at Moody’s Economy.com
Even before downturn, many were struggling - Economy in Turmoil- msnbc.com
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