Average American Family Net Worth Fell Roughly $50,000 Between 2007 and 2010

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Nice Move

Good God that is a lot. Just don’t graduate. Don’t do it. The economy sucks balls, all the job trees that jobs were growing on withered and died, and now the median American family is technically worth less than an inning of Alex Rodriguez playing baseball. I guess if you do feel like graduating then at the very least don’t get married or get anyone pregnant, but then again I tell everyone that anyway.

This news comes from the Fed’s triennial Survey of Consumer Finance. The information gathered is based on 2010 numbers, which was when the data was collected. According to the New York Times, three quarters of the loss was due to the housing market crash, which makes sense considering how big the drop was. Houses, after all, are the biggest asset most families have. This is especially true in the middle class, which typically was hit the hardest.

One reason for this disproportion is that the middle class puts its wealth in housing, and the median amount of home equity dropped to $75,000 in 2010 from $110,000 in 2007. While other investments have recovered much of the value lost in the depths of the crisis, housing prices have hardly budged.

The report also indicates that fewer families are saving for long-term investments (retirement, education, down payments for homes, etc.) and instead opting to set aside their money in case of more short-term problems. I mean, I guess that’s bad, but in a broad sense saving is saving. I assume if they don’t end up needing that money for any short-term issues they could use it for retirement or education.

I say save for retirement and let your kids take out student loans. Student loans are pretty damn manageable when you actually have a job, but jobs are a little harder to find when the country’s elderly workers refuse to trade their cubicles for a room on a Carnival cruise ship. It’s pretty infuriating for a 23-year-old to be told they don’t have enough experience for a position relatively low on the corporate totem pole all because there’s a traffic jam further up the line. Plus that would help curb what I’m sure is the ever increasing brown fury that is being rained down upon this nation’s office bathrooms. To be fair though, you might want to check back in with me in 40 years to see if I still agree with that.



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    • 3
      Fraternity Lifestyle

      The housing ordeal started during Clinton and preventative measures to stop this crisis were shot down by Congressional Democrats during the Bush administration.

      ^ ThisTake a lapLog in or sign up to reply. • 4 years ago
    • 3

      People have been predicting the housing crash/credit crisis since the 1980’s. I wouldn’t necessarily tie it to any administration in particular (although the gov’t could have stepped in and done a better job regulating) but more to America; the citizens, banks, gov’t, basically everyone, being a bunch of greedy assholes who had to fuck things up for our generation.

      ^ ThisTake a lapLog in or sign up to reply. • 4 years ago
  1. 1
    Jon M Fratsman

    Not necessarily the best retirement vs. education saving advice. It’s not necessary to choose between them. I say kick the shit out of your 401k in its first 5 years, especially if your employer matches contributions. Hopefully you’ll have a nice little start on it by the time your first kid rolls around. When that does happen, split the 401k flow and start sending half of it to a 529 account. Those things are amazing. Even if you only contribute to the 529 for 5 or 10 years, accounting for multiple kids, 18 years is a long time to let that grow, and it should be quite a bit by the time they’re ready for college. Just my two cents.

    ^ ThisTake a lapLog in or sign up to reply. • 4 years ago