Downward Mobility and Recovery Rates Remain Virtually Unchanged Since the Late 1960s

Ups and Downs: Does the American Economy Still Promote Upward Mobility?
By: Stephen J. Rose and Scott Winship
Source: Pew Charitable Trusts, Economic Mobility Project

As Americans face rising unemployment rates and greater uncertainty about the future in this current economic downturn, this report investigates the extent to which the American economy promotes upward economic mobility (in the form of income growth) and prevents downward economic mobility (in the form of income declines), and whether it does so to the same degree as in the past. There is widespread consensus that the current recession is likely to affect more families than any since the Great Depression. But more fundamental than the impact of any one recession is whether the United States has entered an era in which families must permanently lower their expectations for income growth and brace themselves for more and bigger income losses.

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