Friday, December 31, 2010

'US middle class to get poor in 5 years'

The entire middle class Americans will fall under the poverty line in five years, as the gap between the rich and the poor is widening in the United States, says an investigative journalist.

“The middle class, I am afraid, in the United States is not going to exist in another five years and everybody is going to be driven down to the lower poor class,” said Wayne Madsen in a Press TV interview.

“They are going to be working, as many people do, maybe two or three minimum-wage jobs just to feed their families,” he emphasized.

“I think it is all part of the steady drift of the United States into a corporate fascist type society. We have seen that through history before, when very small elite has most of the wealth,” Madsen added.

The journalist quoted a Democratic Party economic advisor as saying that the US commercial real estate will witness a huge collapse in the near future.

“When we see the commercial real estate market collapse, it is going to make the residential real estate market pale, in comparison with that collapse, and this promise is just going to keep compounding,” Madsen further explained.

A new report by the Economic Policy Institute (EPI) has revealed that the gap between the rich and the poor in the United States is stretching, standing at its largest level since the survey began in 1962.

The report shows that the richest one percent of US households are 225 times richer than the average household.

According to the survey, the figure has almost doubled since the 1960s. The last survey, conducted in 2007, had indicated that the richest one percent had 181 times more money than the average household, whereas in the 1960s the figure reflected a 125-fold wealth gap between the richest and average household.

The global economic recession has also hit the average US citizens much harder, with their assets declining 41 percent since 2007. The rich only lost 27 percent in the same time period.

In 2009, the richest one percent had an average of $14 million, while the average household had average assets of around $62,200.

In calculating household assets, the EPI includes house ownership. The average US citizen has suffered far more from the impact of falling property prices than the rich, the report said.