Poverty in California

What is the poverty rate in California?
The poverty rate in California is 15.1%. One out of every 6.6 residents of California lives in poverty.

How many people in California live in poverty?
5,773,408 of 38,242,946 residents reported income levels below the poverty line in the last year.

How does the Poverty Rate in California compare to the national average?
California ranks 34th in Poverty Rate at 15.1%(poverty rankings by state).The Poverty Rate of California is slightly higher than the national average of 14.6%.

California Poverty Rate County Map

California County Poverty Rate Comparison

California Poverty Rate By Sex

What is the poverty rate for men vs women living in California?

Male

The Poverty Rate for men who live in California is 14.0%.

Female

The Poverty Rate for women who live in California is 16.2%.

Poverty Rate Disparity for Male vs Female Residents of California

Female residents of California are moderately(15%) more likely to live in poverty than males.

2,644,246 of 18,897,272 males in California live below the poverty line.

3,129,162 of 19,345,674 females in California live below the poverty line.

California Poverty Rate By Age

What's the Poverty Rate in California By Age?

California Poverty Rate Distribution by Age

Breakdown of California Poverty Rate By Age

  • Children Under 6 in California have a Poverty Rate of 21.6%.
  • Children 6 to 11 Years Old in California have a Poverty Rate of 21.3%.
  • Adolescents 12 to 17 Years Old in California have a Poverty Rate of 19.5%.
  • Adults 18 to 59 Years Old in California have a Poverty Rate of 14.3%.
  • Adults 60 to 74 Years Old in California have a Poverty Rate of 10.2%.
  • 75 to 84 Years Old in California have a Poverty Rate of 11.1%.
  • Over 85 Years Old in California have a Poverty Rate of 12.4%.

Historical California Poverty Rate

California Historical Poverty Rate
Year Poverty Rate YoY % Change National

2010

15.8% 15.3%

2011

16.6% 4.0% 15.9%

2012

17.0% 2.0% 15.9%

2013

16.8% 0.0% 15.8%

2014

16.4% 2.0% 15.5%

2015

15.3% 7.0% 14.7%

2016

14.3% 6.0% 14.0%

2017

13.3% 7.0% 13.4%
Source: 2010-2017 ACS 1 Year

California Poverty Rate By Race

Race Population Poverty Rate National Poverty Rate Population

Black

2,165,637

23.2% 25.2% 5.6%

American Indian

283,596

21.9% 26.8% 0.7%

Asian

5,424,139

11.2% 11.9% 13.9%

Pacific Islander

148,186

14.5% 19.0% 0.4%

Other

5,235,273

21.8% 23.8% 13.4%

Two Or More Races

1,788,335

14.3% 18.4% 4.6%

White

14,509,308

9.9% 10.3% 37.2%

Hispanic

14,847,071

20.6% 22.2% 38.1%

What's the Poverty Rate in California By Race?

23.2% of Black residents of California live below the poverty line.

The Poverty Rate of black residents in California is dramatically lower than the national average of 25.2%. 502,610 of 2,165,637 black Californians live below the poverty line. Approximately 5.6% of the total population of California are black.

11.2% of Asian residents of California live below the poverty line.

The Poverty Rate of asian residents in California is the same as than the national average. 607,792 of 5,424,139 asian Californians live below the poverty line. Approximately 13.9% of the total population of California are asian.

9.9% of White residents of California live below the poverty line.

The Poverty Rate of white residents in California is the same as than the national average. 1,430,733 of 14,509,308 white Californians live below the poverty line. Approximately 37.2% of the total population of California are white.

20.6% of Hispanic residents of California live below the poverty line.

The Poverty Rate of hispanic residents in California is the same as than the national average. 3,052,999 of 14,847,071 hispanic Californians live below the poverty line. Approximately 38.1% of the total population of California are hispanic.

California Poverty Rate By School Enrollment

Understanding where poverty hits hardest in California can be better understood by segmenting poverty by whether or not the resident is in school or not.

  • Enrolled in School in California have a Poverty Rate of 20.5%.
  • The Poverty Rate of California residents enrolled in school is slightly higher than the national average of 20.1%. This translates to 2,090,037 of 10,188,198 Californians enrolled in school living below the poverty line within the past year. Approximately 26.1% of the total population of California are currently enrolled in school.

  • Not Enrolled in School in California have a Poverty Rate of 12.7%.
  • The Poverty Rate of California residents not enrolled in school is slightly higher than the national average of 12.2%. This translates to 3,374,151 of 26,620,308 Californians not enrolled in school living below the poverty line within the past year. Approximately 68.3% of the total population of California are currently not enrolled in school.

Poverty for younger ages in California is seen as the most undesirable for the future of the community.

  • Enrolled in Nursery School in California have a Poverty Rate of 17.3%.
  • The Poverty Rate of California residents enrolled in nursery school is slightly lower than the national average of 18.0%. This translates to 102,150 of 590,260 Californians enrolled in nursery school living below the poverty line within the past year. Approximately 1.5% of the total population of California are currently enrolled in nursery school.

  • Enrolled in Elementary School(Grades 1-4) in California have a Poverty Rate of 21.7%.
  • The Poverty Rate of California residents enrolled in elementary school(grades 1-4) is slightly higher than the national average of 21.2%. This translates to 420,479 of 1,937,257 Californians enrolled in elementary school(grades 1-4) living below the poverty line within the past year. Approximately 5.0% of the total population of California are currently enrolled in elementary school(grades 1-4).

Poverty for developing children and young adults in California can have drastic impacts on graduation and college attendance rates.

  • Enrolled in Middle School(Grade 5-8) in California have a Poverty Rate of 20.2%.
  • The Poverty Rate of California residents enrolled in middle school(grade 5-8) is slightly higher than the national average of 19.0%. This translates to 403,563 of 2,002,063 Californians enrolled in middle school(grade 5-8) living below the poverty line within the past year. Approximately 5.1% of the total population of California are currently enrolled in middle school(grade 5-8).

  • Enrolled in High School (Grades 9-12) in California have a Poverty Rate of 19.9%.
  • The Poverty Rate of California residents enrolled in high school (grades 9-12) is moderately higher than the national average of 17.7%. This translates to 426,998 of 2,142,264 Californians enrolled in high school (grades 9-12) living below the poverty line within the past year. Approximately 5.5% of the total population of California are currently enrolled in high school (grades 9-12).

Adult students in college, graduate or professional schools generally bring employers, revenue and higher living wages post-graduation and are seen as a positive to the community.

  • Enrolled in Undergraduate School in California have a Poverty Rate of 21.6%.
  • The Poverty Rate of California residents enrolled in undergraduate school is slightly lower than the national average of 23.4%. This translates to 538,865 of 2,493,392 Californians enrolled in undergraduate school living below the poverty line within the past year. Approximately 6.4% of the total population of California are currently enrolled in undergraduate school.

  • Enrolled in Graduate or Professional School in California have a Poverty Rate of 17.0%.
  • The Poverty Rate of California residents enrolled in graduate or professional school is the same as than the national average of 17.2%. This translates to 86,300 of 507,130 Californians enrolled in graduate or professional school living below the poverty line within the past year. Approximately 1.3% of the total population of California is currently enrolled in graduate or professional school.

Source: 2017 ACS 5 Year

California Poverty Rate By Place of Birth

What is the poverty rate for residents of California born US Citizens vs Foreign-Born?

14.5%

The Poverty Rate for residents of California who were born citizens of the United States is 14.5%.

16.7%

The Poverty Rate for residents of California who were born citizens of a country other than the US is 16.7%.

Poverty Rate for residents of California born US Citizens vs Foreign-Born

Foreign-born residents of California have a higher poverty rate than those who were born US citizens.

Of the 27,825,285 residents of California who were born citizens of the United States, 4,032,324 (14.5%) had income levels below the poverty line within the past year.

Conversely, 1,741,084 (16.7%) of 10,417,661 residents of California who were born citizens of a country other than the US reported income levels below the poverty line within the past year.

California Poverty Rate By City

California Poverty Rate Distribution by City
City Rank Poverty Rate Population

Alhambra

598th

15.1% 85,168

Anaheim

632nd

16.0% 349,007

Antioch

581st

14.6% 110,026

Arden-Arcade

798th

22.0% 98,616

Bakersfield

738th

19.2% 372,680

Berkeley

749th

19.8% 120,179

Buena Park

610th

15.4% 83,020

Burbank

444th

11.3% 104,765

Carlsbad

207th

6.6% 113,147

Carson

413th

10.6% 92,927

Chico

846th

24.6% 90,660

Chino

464th

11.7% 85,609

Chula Vista

491st

12.3% 264,101

Citrus Heights

527th

13.2% 86,618

Clovis

506th

12.7% 104,411

Compton

822nd

23.0% 97,847

Concord

440th

11.2% 128,160

Corona

456th

11.6% 163,585

Costa Mesa

546th

13.8% 112,930

Daly City

332nd

8.9% 106,480

Downey

417th

10.7% 113,358

East Los Angeles

807th

22.4% 123,905

El Cajon

820th

23.0% 103,314

El Monte

811th

22.6% 115,958

Elk Grove

345th

9.0% 166,228

Escondido

642nd

16.3% 150,783

Fairfield

415th

10.6% 112,790

Fontana

569th

14.3% 207,086

Fremont

129th

4.9% 230,964

Fresno

898th

28.4% 519,037

Fullerton

593rd

14.9% 139,976

Garden Grove

625th

15.8% 174,812

Glendale

619th

15.6% 199,750

Hawthorne

663rd

17.0% 87,425

Hayward

410th

10.5% 156,917

Hemet

825th

23.2% 83,604

Hesperia

810th

22.5% 93,190

Huntington Beach

339th

8.9% 200,415

Indio

694th

18.1% 86,867

Inglewood

757th

20.1% 111,006

Irvine

523rd

13.2% 256,877

Lancaster

827th

23.3% 160,113

Livermore

127th

4.8% 88,232

Long Beach

735th

19.1% 470,489

Los Angeles

765th

20.4% 3,949,776

Menifee

403rd

10.4% 86,820

Mission Viejo

133rd

4.9% 96,535

Modesto

664th

17.0% 210,166

Moreno Valley

658th

16.8% 203,691

Murrieta

334th

8.9% 110,043

Newport Beach

184th

6.2% 86,793

Norwalk

555th

13.9% 106,404

Oakland

721st

18.7% 417,442

Oceanside

516th

12.9% 174,811

Ontario

641st

16.2% 171,041

Orange

499th

12.5% 140,289

Oxnard

621st

15.6% 206,732

Palmdale

713th

18.6% 157,358

Pasadena

616th

15.5% 141,231

Pomona

772nd

20.7% 152,366

Rancho Cucamonga

307th

8.4% 174,573

Redding

727th

18.9% 91,236

Redwood City

356th

9.2% 84,368

Rialto

686th

17.9% 102,708

Richmond

624th

15.7% 108,853

Riverside

649th

16.6% 321,570

Roseville

333rd

8.9% 130,705

Sacramento

747th

19.8% 489,650

Salinas

668th

17.2% 156,811

San Bernardino

926th

30.6% 215,252

San Buenaventura (Ventura)

441st

11.2% 110,153

San Diego

577th

14.5% 1,390,966

San Francisco

460th

11.7% 864,263

San Jose

386th

10.0% 1,023,031

San Leandro

438th

11.1% 89,910

San Marcos

489th

12.3% 93,493

San Mateo

285th

8.0% 103,500

Santa Ana

743rd

19.5% 334,493

Santa Barbara

545th

13.7% 91,443

Santa Clara

272nd

7.7% 124,635

Santa Clarita

325th

8.8% 209,489

Santa Maria

714th

18.6% 104,791

Santa Monica

419th

10.7% 92,495

Santa Rosa

472nd

11.8% 174,244

Simi Valley

186th

6.2% 126,546

South Gate

739th

19.3% 95,420

Stockton

808th

22.4% 304,358

Sunnyvale

204th

6.6% 151,565

Temecula

218th

6.8% 110,722

Thousand Oaks

158th

5.7% 128,909

Torrance

237th

7.2% 147,190

Tracy

304th

8.4% 87,613

Vacaville

324th

8.8% 96,918

Vallejo

612th

15.4% 120,599

Victorville

826th

23.3% 121,721

Visalia

762nd

20.3% 130,047

Vista

611th

15.4% 99,496

West Covina

381st

10.0% 107,786

Westminster

677th

17.6% 91,785

Whittier

482nd

12.1% 86,852

Research & Reports

USA National Poverty Rate by County

Poverty Rate

USA Poverty Rate Statistics

View Poverty Report

National Poverty Statistics

Where are the most poverty-stricken areas in your state? We breakdown over 3,000 counties nationwide and show the rank the best and worst communities by poverty rate in your area.

See Poverty Statistics
California Social Security Statistics

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California Social Security Statistics

California Social Security

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California Social Security
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