The gap between the wealthiest and poorest people in the difficulty they report in affording basic items is much wider now than it was in 1992; fully 62% of self-described “working class” people — a group that makes up 47% of the general public — now say their incomes are falling behind the cost of living, up from 45% in September 2007. A much smaller proportion of self-described “professional or business class” people (32% of the public) say their incomes are falling behind (40%), and there has been only a modest increase since September in the percentage expressing this view (six points). People who say their households are “struggling” (15% of the public) remain most likely to say their incomes are falling behind (85%). The recent rise in the percentage of Americans who say that their incomes are falling behind the cost of living has come largely among middle-income and poor people. Roughly seven-in-ten (71%) of those with household incomes of less than $50,000 a year say their incomes are falling behind the cost of living, up 16 points since last September. By contrast, only a third (33%) of those with household incomes of $100,000 a year or more say their incomes are not keeping pace with the cost of living, up modestly since September (four points). Read More