NOTE: Both alternatives use a two-adult/two-child poverty threshold of $14,800; for alternative 1 the scale economy factor is 0.75; for alternative 2 it is 0.65. The poverty rates are for individuals: They are determined on the basis of comparing the income of their family (or one's own income if an unrelated individual) to the appropriate threshold.
a See text for derivation of standardized percentage point changes.
b Hispanics may be of any race.
alternative 1. In other words, the equivalence scale has more of an effect on the elderly than on other groups. This finding also holds for one-person families and members of two-person families, for which, in comparison with other groups, alternative 2 makes more of a difference in their poverty rates than does alternative 1. Indeed, the results for these groups are not unrelated, as a very high proportion of the elderly are in one- and two-person families.11
In 1992, 31 percent of the elderly lived alone (compared with 12 percent of all people age 15 and older); another 54 percent lived with a spouse (Bureau of the Census, 1993d: Table 71). Note that the category of one-person ''families" or unrelated individuals includes those living with other unrelated individuals in a larger household, as well as those living alone.