There isn't one American middle class; there are four. Each is different from the others in its attitudes, outlook and financial circumstance—sometimes in ways that defy traditional stereotypes of the middle class.
Baby Boomers: The Gloomiest Generation
America's baby boomers are in a collective funk. Members of the large generation born from 1946 to 1964 are more downbeat about their lives than are adults who are younger or older.
The Middle Class Blues
When it comes to anxiety about family finances, an old truism applies: Where you stand depends on where you sit. Or, more precisely, on where your house or apartment sits.
Most Americans say they're not saving as much as they should -- but they're apparently not worried enough to do much about it.
Who Wants To Be Rich?
Only 13% of adults say it's "very important" for them to be wealthy, ranking this personal priority far behind six others measured in a new survey .
You’re Laid Off
At a time when the American economy is trending down and the unemployment rate is ticking up, one out of every seven U.S. workers fear they will be laid off in the next 12 months.
Inside the Middle Class: Bad Times Hit the Good Life
Americans feel stuck in their tracks. A majority of survey respondents say that in the past five years, they either haven't moved forward in life or have fallen backward.
About Pew Research Center Pew Research Center is a nonpartisan fact tank that informs the public about the issues, attitudes and trends shaping the world. It conducts public opinion polling, demographic research, media content analysis and other empirical social science research. Pew Research Center does not take policy positions. It is a subsidiary of The Pew Charitable Trusts.