Manage episode 235180041 series 2316213
Are Americans benefiting from the strong economy?
A Federal Reserve study says 4 in 10 Americans say they wouldn’t be able to scrape together for a $400 emergency expense, and a quarter of Americans skipped some form of medical care in the past year because they couldn’t afford it. (Mary Altaffer/AP)
What's up with that?
This is supposed to be the longest period of sustained economic growth on record, yet millions of middle-class and low-income Americans still aren’t on solid enough ground to weather a some sort of economic storm in their lives.
This year’s Federal Reserve’s annual report on household well-being identified the underlying fragility and exposed pockets of distress.
Almost four in 10 people (39 percent) said they wouldn’t be able to scrape together the cash to meet a $400 emergency expense. Even without any sudden expense, about 17 percent of adults said they would miss a payment on at least one bill this month.
More than 6 in 10 said losing their job would mean they couldn’t cover three months of expenses, even if they took out loans, sold assets or borrowed from friends and relatives.
Only 36 percent said their retirement savings are on track. Which means 64% aren't ready
Almost a quarter of Americans skipped some form of medical care in the past year because they couldn’t afford it.
1 in 5 faced major, unexpected medical bills. About 4 in 10 of those folks were still carrying debt related to those bills.
These stats cover 2018, when the unemployment rate averaged 3.9 percent, the lowest since 1969, and the economy grew 2.9 percent, matching its post-Great Recession high. Average hourly earnings grew 3 percent, easily the fastest rate since the recession’s end.
How do you compare? What are you doing to NOT be one of the statistics.