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50 Must-Know Statistics about Income and Wealth for LGBTQ People

Average incomes are lower and poverty rates are higher, especially for transgender people and LGBTQ people of color.

Nearly six years ago, the Supreme Court’s ruling in the Obergefell v. Hodges case guaranteed the right of same-sex couples to marry. It was a watershed event.

From the standpoint of income and wealth, however, LGBTQ people remain at a disadvantage relative to heterosexual people, on average. Average incomes are lower and poverty rates are higher, especially for transgender people and LGBTQ people of color. Ownership rates of financial assets, including retirement accounts and homes, is correspondingly lower.

In the spirit of Pride month (June) and in an effort to illuminate the financial challenges that some people in the LGBTQ community are facing, we’ve compiled 50 statistics about LGBTQ income, wealth, and financial wellness. Each statistic includes a link to the underlying data. You’ll notice some differences in the terminology used: for example, “heterosexual” versus “straight cisgender.” That’s because we used the terminology from the data source material rather than imposing uniform language that may or may not be accurate.

Demographics

5.6%: Percentage of U.S. adults who identify as LGBT, 2020. 
3.5%: Percentage of U.S. adults who identified as LGBT, 2012. 
15.9%: Percentage of U.S. adults born between 1997 and 2002 who identify as LGBT, 2020. 
9.1%: Percentage of U.S. adults born between 1981 and 1996 who identify as LGBT, 2020. 
3.8%: Percentage of U.S. adults born between 1965 and 1980 who identify as LGBT, 2020. 
2.0%: Percentage of U.S. adults born between 1946 and 1964 who identify as LGBT, 2020. 
1.3%: Percentage of U.S. adults born before 1946 who identify as LGBT, 2020. 
54.6%: Percentage of LGBT adults who identify as bisexual, 2020. 
24.5%: Percentage of LGBT adults who identify as gay, 2020. 
11.7%: Percentage of LGBT adults who identify as lesbian, 2020. 
11.3%: Percentage of LGBT adults who identify as transgender, 2020. 
3.3%: Percentage of LGBT adults who volunteer another non-heterosexual preference, such as queer, 2020. 
40%: Percentage of LGBT people who are single, 2018. 
22%: Percentage of heterosexual people who are single, 2018. 
37%: Percentage of LGBT people who have dependent children, 2018. 
43%: Percentage of heterosexual people who have dependent children, 2018.

Income, Poverty, and Financial Stress

8% lower per year: Estimated median earnings for LGBT households relative to heterosexual households across nine countries, 2019. 
17% lower per year: Estimated median earnings for LGBT women relative to heterosexual women, 2019. 
27% lower per year: Estimated median earnings for LGBT women relative to heterosexual men, 2019. 
21.6%: Poverty rate for LGBT people, 2019. 
29.4%: Poverty rate for transgender people, 2019. 
17.9%: Poverty rate for lesbian women, 2019. 
12.1%: Poverty rate for gay men, 2019. 
17.8%: Poverty rate for straight cisgender women, 2019. 
13.4%: Poverty rate for straight cisgender men, 2019. 
30.8%: Poverty rate for Black LGBT people, 2019. 
25.3%: Poverty rate for Black straight cisgender people, 2019. 
37.3%: Poverty rate for Hispanic LGBT people, 2019. 
38.0%: Poverty rate for Hispanic straight cisgender people, 2019. 
41%: Percentage of LGBT people who say they’re struggling to make ends meet or unable to keep up with their expenses. 
27%: Percentage of general population who say they’re struggling to make ends meet or unable to keep up with their expenses. 
29%: Percentage of LGBT individuals who say they work with a financial professional.
39%: Percentage of general population who say they work with a financial professional.

Retirement Assets and Retirement Preparedness

35%: Percentage of LGBT individuals who have assets in a 401(k) or other employer-sponsored retirement plan. 
40%: Percentage of people in general population with assets in a 401(k) or other employer-sponsored retirement plan. 
18%: Percentage of LGBT individuals who have assets in an IRA. 
30%: Percentage of people in general population with assets in an IRA. 
18%: Percentage of LGBT individuals who are covered by an employer-sponsored pension plan. 
23%: Percentage of people in general population who are covered by an employer-sponsored pension plan.
19%: Percentage of LGBT individuals who say they have a will or estate plan. 
26%: Percentage of people in general population who say they have a will or estate plan.
20%: Percentage of LGBT people who say they have formulated a retirement plan in writing. 
16%: Percentage of heterosexual people who say they have formulated a retirement plan in writing. 
22%: Percentage of LGBT people who say they expect that in their own retirement years, they’ll need to provide financial support to their parents. 
15%: Percentage of heterosexual people who say they expect that in their own retirement years, they’ll need to provide financial support to their parents.

Housing and Home Ownership

49.8%: Percentage of LGBT adults who own their own homes, 2020. 
70.1%: Percentage of non-LGBT adults who own their own homes, 2020. 
63.8%: Percentage of same-sex couples who own their own homes.  
75.1%: Rate of home ownership among different-sex couples. 
2.2 times greater: Risk of homelessness among LGBT young adults (age 18-25) versus non-LGBT young adults.

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