What does middle class mean for most folks these days? It probably means you're hurting, and it's a growing problem.
Incomes for 90% of Americans have been stuck in neutral for years now, and the blame doesn't lie solely with the Great Recession. Middle-class incomes have been stagnant for at least a generation, while the wealthiest tier of Americans has surged ahead at lighting speed, reports Analynn Censky for CNN Money . [ The Pros and Cons of ETFs. ]
In 1988, the income of an average American taxpayer was $33,400, adjusted for inflation. Fast forward 20 years, and not much has changed: The average income was still just $33,000 in 2008, according to IRS data. Meanwhile, the richest 1% of Americans - those making $380,000 or more - have seen their incomes grow 33% over the last 20 years, leaving average Americans in the dust. [ More Advisors Are Putting ETFs to Work. ]
The rest of the article - while not directly related to ETFs - is worth a read. If this gap continues to widen, we could have a real problem.
Tisha Guerrero contributed to this article.