CBS News (09/20/12)
New 2011 census data being released today is a hopeful sign in an economic recovery that technically began in mid-2009. Supplemented with unpublished government figures as of the end of this year’s first quarter, the annual survey covers a year in which unemployment fell modestly from 9.6% to 8.9%. On the downside, the jobless rate remains stubbornly high at 8.1% and homeownership fell for a fifth consecutive year to 64.6%—the lowest in over a decade. More Americans than ever are also turning to food stamps. Taken as a whole, however, analysts say the latest census data provide broad-sweeping proof of a stabilizing U.S. economy.
Andrew Cherlin, a professor of sociology and public policy at Johns Hopkins University, points in particular to the upswing in mobility and to young males moving out of their parents’ homes—two signs that more young adults are testing out job prospects. He concludes, “We may be seeing the beginning of the American family’s recovery from the Great Recession. It could be the modest number of new jobs or simply the belief that the worst is over.”