Date of Award

Spring 2011

Degree Type

Professional Project

Degree Name

Masters in Leadership Studies


College of Professional Studies


An alternative poverty rate was calculated using poverty thresholds from the U.S. Census Bureau to assess income poverty and a similar set of thresholds at four months’ of the poverty threshold for annual income to assess wealth (i.e. net worth) poverty. Using point estimates derived from the multiple imputations of the Survey of Consumer Finances (SCF) between the years of 1989 and 2007, the findings revealed the percentage of households in poverty by both measures was 6% in 2007 compared to 11.1% of households experiencing poverty of income only and 22.4% experiencing a poverty of at least one of the measures. The author assessed the demographics of the households experiencing poverty of both income and wealth and found a larger racial gap for African Americans and Hispanics than income poverty alone, support for the lifecycle hypothesis, and the importance of home ownership in lower poverty rates among other factors.