Which Wealth Class are you?

Your Wealth Class Status In the United States – 2 Questions

First Question: Are you middle class?

You may think you are. Doctors and lawyers believe they are middle-class...so do welders and waiters. In a 2015 Pew survey, only 10 percent of Americans said they considered themselves lower-class and just 1 percent thought they were upper-class.


Pew Research suggests that by global standard, people who are middle income live on $10.01-$20 a day, which translates to an annual income of about $14,600 to $29,200 for a family of four. This is modest by the standards of advanced economies. In fact, it straddles the official poverty line in the United States – about $23,000 for a family of four in 2020 (expressed in 2011 prices). By global standards, the poor live on $2 or less a day, or no more than $2,920 annually for a family of four.

Some experts suggest that just shy of 50 percent of the United States population would be truly middle-class.


Second Question: Who Will Be Middle-Class After the Pandemic?

For many Americans, being middle class is defined different ways. The term evokes specific attributes, such as thriftiness and dedication to work. Others define it in relation to income; in the minds of many, those in the middle class are likely to have some retirement savings, own a house, and send their children to college. Research reveals that they all know that the middle class is at precipice…it is struggling.


Several Quick READs from credible resources that you will find helpful:


  • The Rand Blog, Jeffrey B. Wenger and Melanie A. Zaber. ‘Most Americans Consider Themselves Middle-Class. But Are They?’ May 14, 2021 | RAND Blog

  • Pew Research Reports, Rakesh Kochhar. ‘The Pandemic Stalls Growth in the Global Middle Class, Pushes Poverty Up Sharply. Rakesh Kochhar, March 18, 2021 | Pew Research

  • Brookings Blog, Ashleigh Maciolek and Hannah Van Drie ‘Monitoring the middle class: How The American Middle Class Is Really Doing,’ February. 11, 2021 | Brookings Blog

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