US Economy Improves but Inequality Grows

Below is a video clip from Paul Solman of PBS News Hour looking at the inequality in American society. Income inequality has changed over time: today the richest 1 percent of Americans hold about 24 percent of U.S. wealth. But almost a century ago in 1915, that same top percent had 18 percent of the nation’s wealth. Economic inequality in America, widening steadily since 1980, grew during the financial crisis, with the top 5 percent of Americans owning 65 percent of national wealth by mid-2009, up from 62 percent two years before. The losers were the bottom 80 percent, whose share of wealth fell during the crisis. Nearly half had negative net worth by mid-2009.

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