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Entries in Economic Well-Being (1)

Monday
Nov072011

Age Gap Widens Dramatically in Economic Well-Being, Study Finds

Adam Gault/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The rich aren’t just getting richer, but wealthy older Americans are noticeably better off than their counterparts from three decades ago in several areas like income, employment, home ownership and housing values.

A new study from Pew Research Center analyzed the economic well-being of current older and younger adults to those in the past and found that the age-based wealth gap sky-rocketed 47:1 in 2009 compared to 10:1 in 1984.

In 2009, the median net worth of households headed by adults aged 65 and older was 42 percent more than the same age group in 1984.  In contrast, the net worth of households headed by an adult under 35 in 2009 was 68 percent less than the same age group in 1984.

“These age-based gaps widened significantly during the sour economy of recent years, but all key trends are several decades old, indicating that they are also linked to long-term demographic, social and economic changes that have affected different age groups in different ways,” Pew said in a statement.

These changes include structural changes in the labor and housing markets, delayed marriage and retirement, and the changing racial and ethnic composition of the population.

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