The Hidden Poor

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August 2015
The Hidden Poor: Characteristics of Adults Age 65 and Older with Incomes Below the 2011 Elder Economic Security Standard™ Index (Elder Index)

The Hidden Poor are defined as those who have incomes above 100 percent of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL), but who do not have enough income to make ends meet as calculated by the Elder Index. View a county-by-county list of "poor" and "hidden poor".

The links below provide interactive charts to view the economic status (Below the FPL, Hidden Poor, and Above the Elder Index) of older adults in California by county and by family type*.

Hidden Poor Data by Characteristic:

FPL Comparisons:

The link below provides an interactive chart to compare those with incomes below the Elder Index and how their income corresponds with the FPL. This data can be viewed by county and by family type*.


Single elder heads of household: Includes single elders living alone, single elders raising grandchildren and single elders housing adult children.

Older couple heads of household: Includes older couples only, older couples raising grandchildren, older couples housing adult children.

Single elders, others: Includes single elders living in households with a composition not captured in single elder head of household (e.g. single elders who have moved in with their adult children).

Older couple, others: Includes older couples who live in other household compositions.