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Reading Between the Head-Lines

Record 40 Million, 1 in 8 on Food Stamps

2010-05-14 Mish’s Global Economic Blog

Record 40 Million, 1 in 8 on Food Stamps
from Mish’s Global Economic Trend Analysis by noreply@blogger.com (Michael Shedlock)

Hello recovery, where art thou? Month after month, the number of food stamp recipients hits news records.

Please consider Food-stamp tally nears 40 million, sets record.

Nearly 40 million Americans received food stamps — the latest in an ever-higher string of record enrollment that dates from December 2008 and the U.S. recession, according to a government update.

Enrollment has set a record each month since reaching 31.78 million in December 2008. USDA estimates enrollment will average 40.5 million people this fiscal year, which ends Sept 30, at a cost of up to $59 billion. For fiscal 2011, average enrollment is forecast for 43.3 million people.

Snap, Crackle, Pop

It’s no longer supposed to be called “food stamp” program but rather SNAP, Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program.

No matter what you call it, another 260,000 are on it than last month. However, data is way lagging. A quick check of my calendar says it’s May. The SNAP data reported Friday, May 7 is from February.

Excuse me for asking, but how hard is it to count the number of people in a program getting free benefits? Is it really so difficult that it takes months to count?

Here is an interesting tidbit from the article, “Research suggests that one in three eligible people are not receiving benefits.”

My quick math suggests approximately 53 million people could be receiving SNAPs but only 40 million are.

Note: 53 million was arrived at by taking 1/3 of 40 million and adding it 40 million. Another possible intrepretation, perhaps more likely, is 40 million is 2/3 of 60 million.

May 14, 2010 Posted by | Banking, Investments, Lending, Real Estate | Leave a comment

   

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