----- March 26, 2015 -----

New County Level Population Estimates for 2014

The first release in this year's cycle of official population estimates with components of change from the Census Bureau are now available. See our Whatsnew page for a detailed article describing the specifics regarding how to access the data on this web site. We have done our usual standard processing of these data, and we have also created some new graphics modules (one per state) comprised of a report, a bar chart and two maps depicting key items.

There do not appear to be any big surprises in Missouri. The big continue to get bigger (though not by all that much - no county in the state grew by more than 1.6%). Of the top 12 counties ranked by percent change over the past year, all but one (Webster county - suburban Springfield) was an urban county ranked in the top 15 in total population. The state as a whole grew by only three tenths of a percent, and the majority of counties (mostly rural) experienced continued population losses. (See the map at the end of the new charts module for the state.)

Poverty in Missouri 2013

In December the Census Bureau released the latest SAIPE (Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates) data showing county and school district level estimates of median household income and various measures of poverty in 2013. We have looked at the poverty data at the county level for Missouri and have created a short 4-page report that focuses on the areas in the state with the highest poverty rates. We suggest that you view the report in the saipe data directory in another browser window as you read this summary. (See similar reports for other states by changing the state abbreviation, "mo", to any other state abbreviation. The state must have at least 12 counties. )

Some interesting findings taken from the Missouri report:

  1. Counties in the southern part of Missouri have significantly more poverty than those north of the Missouri river.

  2. The bootheel region of the state has the highest poverty rates, with Mississippi county at 36.3% being the worst, almost 5 points ahead of the next poorest county - Shannon.

  3. After the bootheel the next largest pocket of poverty is in the south central part of the state. As with the bootheel this is a very rural and very sparsely populated area.

  4. Somewhat surprisingly only one county north of the Missouri river fell within the upper quinitle base on poverty rates. And that one county, Adair, has an inflated figure due to the student population at Truman State.

  5. The state-wide county map seems to indicate that except for the city of St. Louis there is very little poverty in the two major metro areas of the state, St. Louis and Kansas City. This is very misleading, however, since there are more poor people in St. Louis and Jackson counties than in the entire set of rural southern counties that show up in the darkest blue of the state poverty map. While St. Louis county has an overall poverty rate of less than 11%, there are portions of north county that are over 30% (which can be seen if you look at the data at the school district level.) Likewise Jackson county's overall poverty rate of just over 17% masks the 35% child poverty rate in the Kansas City school district.

    Note: this image is a copy of the one at the end of the above-referenced report. If you access the version in the report you can move the mouse over a county and see its name and poverty rate displayed. You can also click within the county and be taken to our applinks page for that county.

    Poverty Data for Any State in the Country

    If you thought the Missouri data referenced in the previous paragraph would be more useful if the data were for your state then you might be interested in seeing comparable data for anywhere in the country. We have now created a choropleth map of the entire United States depicting the same SAIPE poverty estimates by county. This map features the same MouseOver capability to let you see the name of the county and the value of the PctPoor varible. It also has a drill-down feature but instead of the drill down taking you to the county applinks page it will take you to a page with the same set of 4 graphics (report, bar chart and two maps) for the state in which you click. So, for example, clicking on the map within the state of Pennsyvlvanie takes you to this page: http://mcdc.missouri.edu/data/saipe/pov2013charts/pov2013pa/charts.html.

    To See More of the SAIPE Data

    On the MCDC web site access the saipe data directory using Uexplore at http://mcdc.missouri.edu/cgi-bin/uexplore?/pub/data/saipe . Note the SeeAlso.html link (on the second line of the files portion of the page), and from that page follow the link to the SAIPE web site at the Census Bureau where you not only can get access to all the background information and access to data files, but also to the rather awesome SAIPE Interactive Data Tool.

    Back on the MCDC's Uexplore page for the SAIPE data, you can access our collection of datasets most easily by using the Datasets.html custom index page. The data we used for the reports referenced here came from the mostcnty2013 dataset (mo=Missouri data, stcnty=State & County level summaries, 2013=Time period). The same data for any (or all) state(s) in the country can easily be accessed in the usstcnty2013 dataset (coding a filter based on the State variable once in Dexter, unless you want the whole country). The corresponding datasets moschldst2013 and usschldst2013 contain (slightly different) data summarized at the school district level. For trend analysis you can access the mostcnty20xx and usstcnty20xx datasets that have data for all years 2000 through 2013.