Entries in Net Worth (3)


Median Household Net Worth Down 35 Percent

Brand X Pictures/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Median household net worth declined 35 percent between 2005 and 2010 to $66,740, the Census Bureau reported on Monday.

The federal agency reported median net worth dropped to $66,740 from $102,844 in constant dollars in that period, which included the last recession.

However, excluding home equity, median household net worth actually increased to $15,000 from $13,859 between 2009 and 2010.

Karen Dynan, senior fellow at the Brookings Institution, said the figures show the “devastating” effect of the housing bust on the condition of American families.

“You can clearly see in comparing homeowners and renters, homeowners suffered more in a decline in wealth,” she said.

Census Bureau economist Alfred Gottschalck said the overall decline in net worth “reflects drops in housing values and stock market indices.”

Younger age groups had the biggest percentage declines. Younger households saw a percent decline of 37 percent while older households had a decline of 14 percent. Median net worth of households 65 and older decreased to $170,128 from $195,890. For those under 35, median household net worth decreased to $5,402 from $8,528. However, householders age 35 to 44 had the largest percent decline in median net worth of any age group from 2005 to 2010 at 59 percent.

Households in the Northeast had the highest median net worth at $86,758. Households in the West had the lowest at $57,034. Those in the South followed closely at $57,079. Households in the Midwest had a median of $77,769.

Not surprisingly, more education is associated with a higher net worth. In 2010, those householders with a graduate or professional degree had a median net worth of $245,764. Those with a bachelor’s degree had a median net worth of $142,518. Those with a high school diploma had a median net worth of $42,223. For those without a high school diploma, their median net worth was $7,270.

Last week, the Federal Reserve released its Survey of Consumer Finance which showed the median family had a net worth of $77,300 in 2010, levels last seen in 1992, down from $126,400 in 2007.

The White House responded to last week’s data, saying that household wealth has risen in every year President Obama has been in office, by 23 percent. They explained that the drop in household wealth occurred in 2008, before the president took office.

“Broadly speaking, these two surveys are in line and show how tough financial conditions are for American households and just how far we have to go to get back to where we were,” Dynan said. “They very much illustrate that even though it’s been almost three years since the recession ended, it probably doesn’t feel that way for most families.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Family Net Worth Down to Early 1990s Level

Comstock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The Federal Reserve released its Survey of Consumer Finance, a grim look at how badly American families suffered during the recent recession.  The report covers the years 2007 to 2010, documenting the rout of the so-called Great Recession.

According to the report:

  • The median family had a net worth of $77,300 in 2010, down from $126,400 in 2007 -- down to levels last seen in 1992.  A drop in home prices is a big reason behind this loss.
  • More families said they were saving as a precautionary measure to make sure they had funds to meet short-term needs. Fewer said they were saving for retirement, education or for a down payment on a home.
  • The losses of income and wealth fell most heavily on the middle income groups. Families with incomes in the bottom and top 20 percent of the population had a smaller percentage of losses than families in the middle 60 percent.
  • The homeownership rate, which had risen noticeably between the 2001 and 2004 surveys, continued to trend downward and was down to 2001 levels.

This survey is conducted every three years.  Full report HERE.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


US Households' Net Worth Increased By Nearly $1T in Q1

Comstock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The Federal Reserve released data Thursday showing that the nation’s households continue to see their balance sheets recover after the trauma of the Great Recession, with an additional $943 billion added to their bottom lines in the first three months of 2011.

The report shows Americans’ household net worth (assets like homes, savings and stock holdings minus liabilities like mortgages and credit card debt) at $58 trillion at the end of the first quarter – up 1.7 percent from the end of 2010 and up 5 percent from the same period a year ago.

The “Flow of Funds” report shows that while home values continued to fall, the value of Americans’ stock holdings increased and people continued to pay off debt.

At the depth of the recession, American households had shed $16.4 trillion in net worth, or about 25 percent of overall wealth.

In the past two years we’ve regained $8.6 trillion in our bottom line household values, but remain $7.7 trillion lower than the peak value back in 2007.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio