Poverty in the United States of America refers to people who lack sufficient income or material possessions for their needs. Although the United States is a relatively wealthy country by international standards, poverty has consistently been present throughout the United States, along with efforts to alleviate it, from New Deal-era legislation during the Great Depression to the national War on Poverty in the 1960s to poverty alleviation efforts during the 2008 Great Recession.

The U.S. federal government uses two measures to measure poverty: the poverty thresholds set by the U.S. Census Bureau, used for statistical purposes, and the poverty guidelines issued by the Department of Health and Human Services, which are used for administrative purposes. Poverty thresholds, which recognize poverty as a lack of those goods and services which are commonly taken for granted by members of mainstream society, consist of income levels. On the other hand, poverty guidelines are simpler guidelines that are used to determine eligibility for federal programs such as Head Start and food stamps.

According to a 2020 assessment by the U.S. Census Bureau, the percentage of Americans living in poverty for 2019 (before the pandemic) had fallen to some of lowest levels ever recorded due to the record-long economic growth period and stood at 11.1%. (adjusted for smaller response during the pandemic) However, between May and October 2020, the economic effects of the lockdowns put in place as a result of the pandemic, and the exhaustion of the funding provided by the CARES Act, dragged some eight million people into poverty. | Wikipedia