ReportsSeptember 20, 2012

Where the Public Stands on Government Assistance, Taxes and the Presidential Candidates

When the national conversation focuses on class, the social safety net and the distribution of wealth as it has in the past week, the public sees clear differences between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, and Obama has an overall advantage. People are more likely to say Obama’s policies would help the middle class and poor, […]

ReportsSeptember 10, 2012

A Third of Americans Now Say They Are in the Lower Classes

The percentage of Americans who say they are in the lower-middle or lower class has risen from a quarter of the adult population to about a third in the past four years, according to a national survey of 2,508 adults by the Pew Research Center. Not only has the lower class grown, but its demographic […]

ReportsAugust 31, 2012

Public Says a Secure Job Is the Ticket to the Middle Class

Americans believe that having a secure job is by far the most important requirement for being in the middle class, easily trumping homeownership and a college education, according to a new nationwide Pew Research Center survey of 2,508 adults. Nearly nine-in-ten adults (86%) say a person needs a secure job to be considered part of […]

ReportsAugust 27, 2012

Yes, the Rich Are Different

As Republicans gather for their national convention in Tampa to nominate a presidential candidate known, in part, as a wealthy businessman, a new nationwide Pew Research Center survey finds that many Americans believe the rich are different than other people. They are viewed as more intelligent and more hardworking but also greedier and less honest. […]

All Things CensusAugust 22, 2012

Middle-Income Economics and Middle-Class Attitudes

This posting describes and links to a new report, “The Lost Decade of the Middle Class,” that combines income data from the Census Bureau, wealth data from the Survey of Consumer Finances and findings from a new survey to paint a portrait of diminished finances and muted hopes.

Multi-section ReportsAugust 22, 2012

The Lost Decade of the Middle Class

Chapter 1: Overview As the 2012 presidential candidates prepare their closing arguments to America’s middle class, they are courting a group that has endured a lost decade for economic well-being. Since 2000, the middle class has shrunk in size, fallen backward in income and wealth, and shed some—but by no means all—of its characteristic faith […]

InteractivesAugust 22, 2012

Video: Lost Decade of the Middle Class

Since 2000, the middle class has shrunk in size, fallen backward in income and wealth and shed some — but by no means all– of its characteristic faith in the future. Our new report explores how middle-class Americans view themselves, as well as their outlook on the future and on the presidential candidates who are […]

All Things CensusAugust 2, 2012

The Middle Class Shrinks and Income Segregation Rises

A new Pew Research Center report shows that the share of upper-income households living in neighborhoods that are mainly upper income has risen from 1980 to 2010, as has the share of lower-income households living in neighborhoods where most other households are lower income. Income segregation also has grown in most of the nation’s largest metropolitan areas.

ReportsJanuary 11, 2012

Rising Share of Americans See Conflict Between Rich and Poor

The Occupy Wall Street movement no longer occupies Wall Street, but the issue of class conflict has captured a growing share of the national consciousness.

Multi-section ReportsMay 15, 2011

Is College Worth It?

College costs are rising, student debt is mounting, and most Americans say college fails to deliver good value for the money. Meantime, only 19% of college presidents say the U.S. system is the best in the world. However, more than eight-in-ten college graduates say college was a good investment for them personally.