America’s wealth gap between middle-income and upper-income families is widest on record
The gap between America’s upper-income and middle-income families has reached its highest level on record. In 2013, the median wealth of the nation’s upper-income families ($639,400) was nearly seven times the median wealth of middle-income families ($96,500).
Debate over inequality highlights sharp partisan divisions on the issue
Federal Reserve chief Janet Yellen addressed the issue of inequality in a speech last week, an issue on which there is a sharp partisan divide.
Global Views on Opportunity and Inequality
Publics in advanced economies are pessimistic about the financial prospects for the next generation, while emerging and developing nations are more optimistic.
The nation’s wealth recovers, but largely for those at the top
The nation’s aggregate wealth continues to show signs of recovery, but that wealth recovery has been concentrated on the wealthiest Americans. Meanwhile, the aggregate net worth for America’s economic middle is actually declining.
Chart of the Week: The black-white gap in incarceration rates
Black men in their prime working years, especially those without a high school education, are much more likely to be in jail than white men are.
Chart of the Week: How America’s poor can still be rich in stuff
While most manufactured goods are considerably cheaper than they were three decades ago, many key services are much more expensive — contributing to the paradox of greater material abundance among even poor Americans.
Despite recovery, fewer Americans identify as middle class
Today about as many Americans identify themselves as lower or lower-middle class (40%) as say they are in the middle class (44%).
King’s Dream Remains an Elusive Goal
Five decades after Martin Luther King, Jr.’s historic “I Have a Dream” speech in Washington, D.C., fewer than half (45%) of Americans say the country has made substantial progress toward racial equality.
Black unemployment rate is consistently twice that of whites
Much has changed for African-Americans since the 1963 March on Washington (which, recall, was a march for “Jobs and Freedom”), but one thing hasn’t: The unemployment rate among blacks is still about double that among whites, as it has been for most of the past six decades.
Having a secure job replaces homeownership as the key to being middle-class
Nearly nine-in-ten Americans now say having a secure job is essential to being in the middle-class; in 1991, it was homeownership.