US household income worse than at end of recession

The median American household income is now 4.1% less than in 2009, data shows.

by Elizabeth Anderson
Last Updated: 09 Oct 2013
The US may have ‘officially’ begun the road to recovery two years ago but try telling that to the average American wage-earner.

The median income of US households has dropped 4.1% since 2009, the year the recession ended. Median income adjusted for inflation was $50,054 in 2011, down from $52,195 in 2009, annual data from the Census Bureau shows.

There are other gloomy signs about the health of the US economy in general. US GDP grew 2% in the first quarter of 2012, then slipped to 1.7% in the second quarter. Forecasts suggest this will fall again to 1.5% in Q3.

The Federal Reserve announced yesterday an open-ended third round of its QE programme. Monthly $40bn purchases of mortgage-backed securities will be committed to kickstart the economy again; meanwhile the near-zero interest rate will remain in tact until mid-2015. But will it be enough?

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