mybudget360.com / By mybudget360 / March 3, 2013
Income inequality is now at levels last seen in the United States during the Gilded Age. This was a time of incredible opulence for the few while the many struggled to get by. There is even a story of a Mrs. Stuyvesant Fish throwing a dinner party to honor her dog that arrived wearing a $15,000 diamond necklace. A very stark contrast to how most lived. In 1890 11 million of the 12 million families earned less than $1,200 per year. Of this group the average annual income was $380, well below the poverty line. While we think we are far removed from a time of such dramatic contrast, we now have a country where the stock market is reaching a peak, yet truly the benefits go to a small number of Americans. The top 1 percent controls 42 percent of all financial wealth (the top 20 percent control roughly 90 percent of all stock ownerssesehip and financial wealth). The bottom 80 percent of Americans control less than 10 percent of all stocks owned. People seemed shocked to find out that the average per capita wage in the US is $26,000. Is this kind of wealth inequality beneficial to our country?
Where the income is going
Income inequality is resembling levels last seen in the early 1900s: