Wealthiest Americans Have 288 Times Net Worth Of Typical Family

The wealth gap between the richest Americans and the typical family more than doubled over the past 50 years. In 1962, the top 1% had 125 times the net worth of the median household. That shot up to 288 times by 2010, according to a

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The wealth gap between the richest Americans and the typical family more than doubled over the past 50 years.

In 1962, the top 1% had 125 times the net worth of the median household. That shot up to 288 times by 2010, according to a new report by the Economic Policy Institute.

That trend is happening for two reasons: Not only are the rich getting richer, but the middle class is also getting poorer.

Most Americans below the upper echelon have suffered a decline in wealth in recent decades. The median household saw its net worth drop to $57,000 in 2010, down from $73,000 in 1983. It would have been $119,000 had wealth grown equally across households.

The top 1%, on the other hand, saw their average wealth grow to $16.4 million, up from $9.6 million in 1983. This is due in large part to the growing income inequality divide, as well as the sharp rise in value of stocks over the period.

Of course, we've all known this, except for perhaps these most recent precise numbers.

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About Diane Sweet

Diane Sweet's picture
Senior Editor, Lives in a gerrymandered district in Michigan.

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