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D.Muthukrishnan (Muthu), Certified Financial Planner- Personal Financial Advisor

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25 Statistics that proves the extinction of American Middle Class

Posted by Muthu on August 24, 2010

The 25 statistics below prove that the middle class is being systematically wiped out of existence in America. The rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer at a staggering rate.

 1. According to a 2009 poll, 61% of Americans “always or usually” live paycheck to paycheck, which was up from 49% in 2008 and 43% in 2007.

 2. 36% of Americans say that they don’t contribute anything to retirement savings.

 3. A staggering 43% of Americans have less than $10,000 saved up for retirement.

 4. 24% of American workers say that they have postponed their planned retirement age in the past year.

 5. The number of Americans with incomes below the official poverty line rose by about 15% between 2000 and 2006, and by 2008 over 30 million US workers were earning less than $10 per hour.

 6. According to Harvard Magazine, 66% of the income growth between 2001 and 2007 went to the top 1% of all Americans.

 7. In New York, the top fifth of earners collect more than 53% of the income; the bottom fifth takes home less than 3%.

 8. Over 1.4 million Americans filed for personal bankruptcy in 2009, which represented a 32% increase over 2008.

9. Only the top 5% of households have earned enough additional income to match the rise in housing costs since 1975.

10. For the first time in US history, banks own a greater share of residential housing net worth in the United States than all individual Americans put together.

11. In 1950, the ratio of the average executive’s paycheck to the average worker’s paycheck was about 30 to 1. Since the year 2000, that ratio has exploded to between 300 to 500 to one.

12. As of 2007, the bottom 80% of American households held about 7% of the liquid financial assets.

13. The bottom 40% of income earners now collectively own less than 1% of the nation’s wealth.

14. Average Wall Street bonuses for 2009 were up 17% when compared with 2008.

15. The average income of the top fifth of New York families is 8.7 times greater than that of the bottom fifth. This is the biggest difference of all states.

16. The average income of families in the top 5% in New York was five times greater than the average income of families in the middle 20% of earners. Again this is the biggest difference of all states.

17. The average federal worker now earns about twice as much as the average worker in the private sector.

18. An analysis of income tax data by the Congressional Budget Office found that the top 1% of US households own nearly twice as much of America’s corporate wealth as they did just 15 years ago.

19. The average time needed to find a job has risen to a record 35.2 weeks.

20. More than 40% of Americans who are employed now work in often low-paying service jobs.

21. For the first time in US history, more than 40 million Americans are on food stamps, and the US Department of Agriculture projects that number will go up to 43 million Americans in 2011.

22. What American workers compete with: In China a garment worker makes approximately 86 cents an hour, and in Cambodia it’s 22 cents an hour.

23. Despite the financial crisis, the number of millionaires in the US rose a whopping 16% to 7.8 million in 2009.

24. About 21% of all children are living below the poverty line in 2010 — the highest rate in 20 years.

25. According to Professor Emmanuel Saez of the University of California at Berkeley, the top 10% percent of Americans now take in approximately 50% of the income.

(Courtesy: Michael T. Snyder, Newyork Post)

One Response to “25 Statistics that proves the extinction of American Middle Class”

  1. Mark said

    Great article to link to for my blog post. Do you have a newsletter I can subscribe to.. Or only your RSS feed?

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