Ways to close the nation’s wealth gap

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(NNPA)—Today, middle class households feel the same financial stress that low- and moderate-income families have borne for years, says new research by the Corporation for Enterprise Development, a national nonprofit organization working to alleviate poverty and create economic opportunity.  In its report, Treading Water in the Deep End, CFED analyzes the financial security of American households and public policy responses to the financial crisis.

“As millions of Americans struggle to save for emergencies, investing in their futures is increasingly out of reach,” states the report.

Liquid asset poverty is defined in the report as a household budget that is so tight that any unforeseen expenditure such as a car repair or medical expense cannot be managed without incurring debt. The financial insecurity of America’s liquid asset poor is CFED’s focus of findings.

The report found that the majority of the nation’s liquid asset poor are employed (89 percent), White (59 percent) and have at least some college education (48 percent). Even among middle-income households, defined as those earning $56,113 to  $91,356, 25 percent of these consumers do not have enough savings to cover living expenses for three months.

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