|Empty Pockets (Image by barbaranixon from Flickr)
A new report from the Washington DC-based Urban Institute indicates that the overall percentage of wealth of those in their 20s and 30s has been dropping steadily and is now at its lowest level since records have been kept, the WSWS reports.
The study, “Lost Generation? Wealth Building Among Young Americans,” found that young people aged 29-37 saw a 21% decline in their accrued wealth over the past few decades, while those who are 74 and older saw their wealth increase by 150%. One explanation is that older Americans are more likely to have defined-benefit pensions, which have become increasingly rare for younger workers. Younger workers are also saddled withthe highest amount of student debt ever, with the average 25-year-old owing$25,000. Young people have also been particularly hard hit by the housing crisis and unemployment. The majority of new jobs created since the “recovery” started pay less than $15 per hour. Meanwhile, the number of mortgages held by 25-30 year-olds has dropped from 9% to 4% of all mortgages.