Effects of Great Recession linger for many workers

06/25/2014 11:58 AM

06/25/2014 11:58 AM

New data show people still struggling to crawl out of the hole that the Great Recession created for them.

The wealth gap also continues to widen. The richest 5 percent of Americans held 24 times the wealth of the median household in 2013. That was up from 16.5 times as much in 2007, a study by University of Michigan researchers showed.

That means the wealth of the folks at the top picked up while people in the middle and bottom lost ground. Gains in the stock market since the Great Recession deserve a lot of credit, or blame. But again, stock market wealth flows to the top earners.

About 10 percent of households own 80 percent of stocks. People in the middle class have their wealth in the equity of their homes. Home prices have recovered somewhat from the Great Recession, but 18.8 percent of homeowners remained upside down on their mortgages, meaning they owe more on their homes than they are worth, The Associated Press reports.

And in the Kansas City area, average hourly wages fell behind the national average in 10 major occupational categories. It may take people in this area a bit longer to claw out of the hole from the Great Recession.

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