Tag Archives: marriage

Income Inequality Matters, but Mobility Is Just as Important

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Concerns about rising income inequality are based on comparing income distributions over time. It is important to remember that such distributions are snapshots of a single year, and that the same households do not necessarily appear year after year in the same quintile of the distribution. Paying attention to mobility, as well as inequality, gives us a richer picture of the income possibilities for households over time. We document changes in a measure of income mobility over the past 40 years, a period in which income inequality has increased. We find a modest level of movement through the distribution, […]

Black college graduates are losing wealth. Here’s what can help.


2013 graduates of Bowie State University. (Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images) Ray Boshara is the director of the St. Louis Fed’s Center for Household Financial Stability and a senior fellow in the Aspen Institute’s Financial Security Program. The views here are his own.

Acclaimed TV shows such as “ Atlanta ,” “ Black-ish ” and “ Insecure ” reveal a troubling paradox: Why do many well-educated black Americans feel so economically insecure? Here’s a surprising clue: Blacks with college degrees have lost wealth over the past generation.

Lots of wealth, in fact — and in sharp contrast to whites. Research from the […]

The American Dream Hinges on Family


If Republicans want to improve working-class social mobility, they should pursue policies that put the family first.

Editor’s Note: This piece was written in partnership with the Annie E. Casey Foundation as part of their “Opportunity 2017: An Agenda to Increase Prosperity.”

One of the most troubling trends of our time is the decline in economic opportunity. From the early 20th century until the 1980s, children consistently out-earned their parents. Then the tide stopped rising and children’s odds of out-earning their parents became entirely random, as Stanford economist Raj Chetty has shown.This sorry state of affairs persists today. […]

How Did America’s Wealth Inequality Reach This Level of Toxic?


Photo Credit: nuvolanevicata / Shutterstock The following is an adapted excerpt from the new book Toxic Inequality: How America’s Wealth Gap Destroys Mobility, Deepens the Racial Divide, and Threatens Our Future by Thomas M. Shapiro. Copyright © 2017. Available from Basic Books, an imprint of Perseus Books, LLC, a subsidiary of Hachette Book Group, Inc.:

In recent years, as living standards for many families have declined and productivity, income, and wealth gains have flowed to the very top, a new conversation about inequality has emerged in the United States. The Occupy Wall Street movement, which began in the fall […]

How Did America’s Wealth Inequality Reach This Level of Toxic?


Photo Credit: nuvolanevicata / Shutterstock The following is an adapted excerpt from the new book Toxic Inequality: How America’s Wealth Gap Destroys Mobility, Deepens the Racial Divide, and Threatens Our Future by Thomas M. Shapiro. Copyright © 2017. Available from Basic Books, an imprint of Perseus Books, LLC, a subsidiary of Hachette Book Group, Inc.:

In recent years, as living standards for many families have declined and productivity, income, and wealth gains have flowed to the very top, a new conversation about inequality has emerged in the United States. The Occupy Wall Street movement, which began in the fall […]

Featured Authors Carol Graham ’84 Considers The American Dream and Inequality


The book: “Is happiness equally available to everyone in the United States?” This is the premise of Happiness for All? Unequal Hopes and Lives in the Pursuit of the American Dream (Princeton University Press), a timely new book that links income inequality and happiness. Using new research, Graham shows that the highest cost of being poor is the stress, insecurity, and lack of hope it causes. This creates further negative consequences, including lack of investment in one’s future, greater mortality rates, and failed marriages. Happiness for All? addresses the optimism gap in this country and the importance of well-being […]

How Utah has kept the American dream alive


For a girl raised on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, Salt Lake City is a very weird place.

I went to Utah precisely because it’s weird. More specifically, because economic data suggest that modest Salt Lake City, population 192,672, does something that the rest of us seem to be struggling with: It helps people move upward from poverty. I went to Utah in search of the American Dream.

Columnists don’t talk as much as they used to about the American Dream. They’re more likely to talk about things like income mobility, income inequality, the Gini coefficient – sanitary, clinical terms. […]

Charlotte’s big report on economic mobility was a letdown — because the city is anxious for action


More than 20 minutes before a blue-ribbon commission unveiled its vision for eliminating disparities in Charlotte, the sizable parking deck outside the Government Center was closed off.

It was full. Yet people still streamed down the sidewalks of Second Ward to hear the presentation.

In one of the most visible shows of civic cooperation and muscle in recent memory, business and political leaders spent nearly two hours Monday morning discussing a new report full of strategies to alleviate poverty and help people climb the economic ladder.The event drew dignitaries from all corners of Charlotte. But the much-anticipated report left much still […]

Economic Mobility and the Mortality Crisis Among US Middle-aged Whites

To the Editor:

Recent studies demonstrate an alarming rise in mortality rates among middle-aged white Americans in recent decades. 1–4 These studies hypothesize that an underlying cause of this phenomenon is the growing realization among some members of this age group that they will not achieve a better standard of living than their parents, leading to destructive health behaviors. Put differently, this hypothesis ties the prospects of upward mobility to health outcomes in white middle-aged Americans. While conceptually attractive, this link has not been explicitly studied. Our study addressed this gap by examining whether county-level economic opportunity was associated […]

Military Economy-Corollary 8

Military spending not only hurts economic growth as the last press release found, but many interesting corollaries spring from that central finding.

The 8 Indirect Military Economics Corollaries and dates:

Nobel Economics Prize Perversion 12-29-16Low Level Military Defense 12-5-15Creating Economic Model, 28 Steps 2-14-15Military Money and Power 8-10-14Military States Political Dominance 4-26-14Banking and the Military 1-2-14What Does Healthcare Have to Do with Empire? 12-13-13Why Were Murder and Crime Cut in Half in the Nineties? 12-5-1 3 Nobel Economics Prize Perversion 12-29-16 This shows how economists do not even believe it’s possible to develop a science of economics. I […]