As we’re all too aware by now, it’s been a raw decade for young Americans. The job market still has a giant, recession-shaped crater in it. A college degree is more expensive yet more essential than ever. Wages are stagnant.
All of this adds up to a single sad possibility, according to the New York Times’ Annie Lowrey: Today’s twenty- and thirty-somethings may never end up as rich and financially secure as their parents. Lowrey’s story points to a recent study by the Urban institute, which suggests that Americans under forty, financially wracked by student debt and the housing bust, have saved up much less wealth than the generations before them. Because wealth compounds over time, there’s a strong chance they won’t ever catch up.
It’s bad out there. Really bad. As world leaders finally begin to admit that we are smack dab in the middle of another Great Depression and the economy stands at the cusp of another earth-shaking collapse of the financial system, the US census reports that nearly 100 million Americans are now classified as living in poverty or are considered “near poor.” Continue reading