During the first two years of the nation’s economic recovery, the mean net worth of households in the upper 7% of the wealth distribution rose by an estimated 28%, while the mean net worth of households in the lower 93% dropped by 4%, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of newly released Census [...]
After running up record debt-to-income ratios during the bubble economy of the 2000s, young adults shed substantially more debt than older adults did during the Great Recession and its immediate aftermath—mainly by virtue of owning fewer houses and cars, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of Federal Reserve Board and other government [...]
Chapter 1: Overview Second-generation Americans—the 20 million adult U.S.-born children of immigrants—are substantially better off than immigrants themselves on key measures of socioeconomic attainment, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of U.S. Census Bureau data. They have higher incomes; more are college graduates and homeowners; and fewer live in poverty. In all of [...]
With an aging population and a generation of young adults struggling to achieve financial independence, the burdens and responsibilities of middle-aged Americans are increasing. Nearly half (47%) of adults in their 40s and 50s have a parent age 65 or older and are either raising a young child or financially supporting a grown child [...]
As President Barack Obama negotiates with Republicans in Congress over federal entitlement spending, a new national survey by the Pew Research Center finds that a majority of Americans (55%) have received government benefits from at least one of the six best-known federal entitlement programs. The survey also finds that most Democrats (60%) and Republicans [...]
Despite a slowly improving economy and a three-year-old stock market rebound, Americans today are more worried about their retirement finances than they were at the end of the Great Recession in 2009, according to a nationally representative survey of 2,508 adults conducted by the Pew Research Center. About four-in-ten adults (38%) say they are “not [...]
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, [...]
Every decade, new information from the decennial census is used to update a wide range of government demographic estimates and survey benchmarks. In some cases, that results in revisions to previously published data, which researchers need to note.
The Census Bureau released 2011 American Community Survey data today, and this posting looks at news coverage about the newly released estimates. Most coverage focused on economic indicators, with some stories saying the economy was still declining but others concluding the decline may have bottomed out.
The Pew Research Center has published a number of recent reports that are relevant to the new Census Bureau numbers for the 2011 poverty rate, median household income and people without health insurance. This posting lists and links to reports about Americans’ attitudes toward their own economic circumstances and views on helping the poor, as well as analysis and explanation about poverty and economic well-being.
The median income of American households decreased by as much in the two years after the official end of the Great Recession as it did during the recession itself. The latest estimates from the Census Bureau show that the median income for U.S. households in 2011 was $50,054.1 In 2009, the year the Great Recession [...]
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 [...]
Americans do not rate their personal finances any better –or worse – than they did when Barack Obama took office nearly four years ago. And while income is a major factor in people’s views of their personal finances, so too is their partisan affiliation. The Pew Research Center has been tracking personal financial well-being for [...]
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. [...]
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.
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 [...]
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.
View residential income segregation maps of top 10 U.S. metro areas.
If there’s supposed to be a stigma attached to living with mom and dad through one’s late twenties or early thirties, today’s “boomerang generation” didn’t get that memo.
Hispanics will account for three-quarters of the growth in the nation’s labor force from 2010 to 2020, according to new projections from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). One major reason is that the Hispanic population is growing rapidly due to births and immigration. At the same time, the aging of the non-Hispanic white population is expected to reduce their numbers in the labor force.
Young adults hit hard by the recession. A plurality of the public believes young adults, rather than middle-aged or older adults, are having the toughest time in today’s economy.
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.
Money-sharing by cohabiting couples is the topic of this article, which focuses on the Census Bureau’s new alternative measure of poverty. Cohabiting couples are much less likely to be considered poor under the alternative measure than the official measure of poverty’; the major reason is that the alternative measure assumes such couples share expenses, while the official measure assumes they are separate economic units.
Households headed by older adults have made dramatic gains relative to those headed by younger adults in their economic well-being over the past quarter of a century.
A new Pew Research Center report explores the demographics and economics of multi-generational households. It concludes that moving to a multi-generational household appears to lift Americans out of poverty, and this is especially true for groups most affected by the recession. Household incomes also are higher for some groups in multi-generational households.
Without public debate or fanfare, large numbers of Americans enacted their own anti-poverty program in the depths of the Great Recession: They moved in with relatives.
Pew Research Center reports can add context to the Census Bureau’s release of 2010 data on U.S. income, poverty and health insurance coverage. These Pew Research Center reports, linked to in this article, have documented the impact of the Great Recession and shaky recovery on Americans’ wealth, work lives, personal finances and emotional well-being.
The median wealth of white households is 20 times that of black households and 18 times that of Hispanic households, according to a Pew Research Center analysis of newly available government data from 2009.
Cohabitation is an increasingly prevalent lifestyle in the United States. The share of 30- to 44-year-olds living as unmarried couples has more than doubled since the mid-1990s. Adults with lower levels of education—without college degrees—are twice as likely to cohabit as those with college degrees.
A new Pew Research Center analysis, using Census Bureau data, estimates that the typical adult with a bachelor’s degree (but no further education) will earn $1.42 million over a 40-year career, compared with $770,000 for a typical high school graduate.