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Bureau of Labor Statistics > Price and Index Number Research > Price research data > Research Poverty Thresholds

2021-2020 Supplemental Poverty Measure Thresholds Based on Consumer Expenditure Survey Data

Measure 2021 2020


$27,479 $26,246

SPM Owners with mortgages

$31,107 $29,959

SPM Owners without mortgages

$26,279 $25,222

SPM Renters

$31,453 $30,150

NOTE: Research SPM Thresholds are produced in the Division of Price and Index Number Research (DPINR), Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), U.S. Department of Labor. Thresholds and statistics for both 2020 and 2021 are based on Food, Clothing, Shelter, Utilities, Telephone, and Internet (FCSUti) and include in-kind benefits for LIHEAP, NSLP, WIC, and rental assistance. Rental assistance is calculated for Consumer Units in public housing, rental units subsided with financial assistance, rent-controlled rental units, and units receiving rent as pay. For these thresholds, telephone is no longer considered part of utilities but is instead added to the SPM thresholds in the same way as food and clothing. Owner shelter expenditures include those for mortgage principal payments. Unlike the 2020 thresholds, the 2021 thresholds do not include rent as pay received by renters.

Source: The thresholds, shares, and means were produced by Juan D. Munoz under the guidance of Thesia I. Garner. Munoz and Garner work in the Division of Price and Index Number Research, BLS. These thresholds and statistics are produced for research purposes only using the U.S. Consumer Expenditure Interview Survey. The thresholds are not BLS production quality. The 2020 and 2021 thresholds incorporate all the changes approved September 30, 2020 by the Interagency Technical Working Group on the SPM. For methodological details and related research regarding the SPM thresholds, see <


Last Modified Date: August 29, 2023