Skewed: Income Inequality in America. The American Dream has Gone…

First published in December 2013

Income Inequality


Opportunity in America: It’s shrinking

Except for the few
[% wealth held by percentile][4]
0-50th: 1.1
50-90th: 24.3

Lowest 60% of earners are making < the wealthiest 400 Americans:
$1.22 trillion vs. $1.27 trillion [6]

To put that in context: The average wealth of one of the 400 richest Americans is equal to the average wealth of 510,000 people in the bottom 60%
With the 1%’s wealth much more tied to the real estate, stock market

Note: The SNAP (food stamp) budget of $78 billion is less than the investing budget of 20 wealthy Americans[8]

CEO vs. Worker inequality 
The Average CEO makes 354 times what the average worker makes[3]
[year: ratio between worker/CEO earnings]
1982: 42:1
1992: 201:1
2002: 281:1
2012: 354:1

Differences in expendable income are staggering

The average nationwide 1 adult living wage is $19546.17. Here’s how that breaks down per quintile:

Per month:

20%– -$3188
40%– +$12641
60%– +$37655
80%– +$77751
90%– +$134,584
99%– +$487,006


20%– -$61.3
40%– +$243.09
60%– +$724.13
80%– +$1495.21
90%– +$2588.15
99%– +$9365.5

Per week.

With Strong Racial Correlates
The Average White household in 2007 had a net worth of $143,600
14 TIMES the average net worth of Hispanic or black households[7]

Myth: rich Americans don’t pay their taxes
But at least the super rich pay their taxes.
With the top 400 earners paying $16 billion in taxes.[5]

But that doesn’t help the 21.4% of children who grow up in poverty. [7]

Without greater income equality democratic ideals are a sham.

Articles by: Finance Degree Center

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