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Rural Migration Blog

Census of Agriculture 2017: Commodities and Producers

May 28, 2019

The Census of Agriculture found two million farms in 2017. Most were small operations, selling farm products worth less than $10,000. The largest 77,000 farms, each selling farm products worth $1 million or more, accounted for over two-thirds of total farm sales.

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Census of Agriculture 2017

May 28, 2019

The federal Census of Agriculture for 2017, conducted in years ending in two and seven, was released in April 2019. Almost 72 percent of those to whom the questionnaire was sent responded.

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Federal and State Minimum Wages

May 28, 2019

The federal minimum wage has been $7.25 an hour since 2009, but 29 states have raised their minimum wages above the federal level, such as the $12 an hour minimum wage in California in 2019. Many city and county governments have raised minimum wages, such as the $15 minimum wage in New York City.

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The Changing Nature of Work

May 28, 2019

Most of the world’s 3.6 billion workers are in developing countries, where two thirds of workers have informal jobs, defined as jobs that do not offer workers minimum wage protections and work-related benefits such as social security and health insurance.

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USDA Projections to 2028

May 28, 2019

USDA releases projections for the next decade each February. The projections to 2028 assume that consumer incomes will continue increasing in developing countries and that the US dollar will remain relatively strong. Rising incomes bolster demand abroad for US commodities, while the strong dollar makes US exports more expensive.

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Central American Families and the Border Crisis

April 12, 2019

Almost 92,000 migrants were apprehended just inside the Mexico-US border in March 2019, including 58,000 Central American parents with children and 8,900 children traveling alone. Some 107,212 families were arrested just inside the Mexico-US border in FY18.

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Leading Wine Exporters to the US

April 12, 2019

Some 410 million cases of wine were sold in the US in 2018; each case is 2.4 gallons, and each gallon is five bottles. Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc and French Rosè were standout performers in 2018, with a growing volume sold at higher-than-average prices.

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Rural Labor Force Participation

April 12, 2019

The US labor force participation rate, the share of persons 16 and older who are employed or looking for work, peaked at 67 percent in early 2001 and has fallen to 63 percent. Slower labor force growth and lower labor force participation can translate into slower economic growth unless productivity rises to offset fewer workers.

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Who is Middle Class?

April 12, 2019

The US has no official definition of middle class. Most definitions of middle class are based on household income. The median US household income in 2016 was $53,000, meaning that half of US households had higher and half had lower incomes. The average household income was higher, $83,100, because of high-income households.

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World Population to Quadruple in Less than a Century

April 12, 2019

The world’s population, two billion in 1927, doubled to four billion in 1974 and is projected to reach eight billion in 2023.

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