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American Wealth Gap Reaches All-Time High – Pew Research Center

By Sarah Benali of Kitco News
Friday January 9, 2014 1:40 PM


(Kitco News) - While the U.S. economic recovery has picked up steam since the 2008 crisis, the wealth gap between upper-income and middle-income families has increased nearly seven-fold, and according to a Pew Research Center report, this trend is expected to continue.

The report stated that the gap between America’s upper-income and middle-income families has reached its highest level on record.

“In 2010, the median wealth of upper-income families was 6.2 times the median wealth of middle-income families. By 2013, that wealth ratio grew to 6.6,” the nonpartisan fact tank said.

Pew Research noted that although the median wealth for all groups – upper, middle and lower-income families – declined from 2007-2010, the upper-income group was not hit “nearly as hard as lower- and middle-income families.”   

“Median wealth declined by 17% from 2007 ($718,000) to 2010 ($595,300) among upper-income families. In contrast, middle-income (-39%) and lower-income (-41%) families had larger declines in wealth,” the report said.

Looking at historical data, the research firm said that while the upper-income homes experienced wealth increases over the past three decades, wealth levels in 2013 for middle- and lower-income families are similar to where they were in the early 1990s.

“America’s upper-income families have a median net worth that is nearly 70 times that of the country’s lower-income families, also the widest wealth gap between these families in 30 years,” Pew Research said.

“The Great Recession did set back the median wealth of upper-income families, but over the past three years these families have recouped some of their losses.”

By Sarah Benali of Kitco News sbenali@kitco.com
Follow me on Twitter @SdBenali


Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are those of the author and may not reflect those of Kitco Metals Inc. The author has made every effort to ensure accuracy of information provided; however, neither Kitco Metals Inc. nor the author can guarantee such accuracy. This article is strictly for informational purposes only. It is not a solicitation to make any exchange in precious metal products, commodities, securities or other financial instruments. Kitco Metals Inc. and the author of this article do not accept culpability for losses and/ or damages arising from the use of this publication.
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