The Rise and Fall of Wealth in the U.S.

The Great Recession has erased nearly two decades of the average American family’s net worth, leaving many no better off than they were in the early 1990s, says a new report by the Federal Reserve.

Meanwhile CEO pay continues to reach record heights, says another report.

According to the Fed’s Survey of Consumer Finances, in 2010 the average middle-class family had a net worth of $77,300, compared to $126,400 in 2007. The housing crash contributed to three-quarters of the loss.

Middle-class family incomes also fell from $49,600 in 2007 to $45,800 in 2010.

In contrast, median pay of the nation’s 200 top-paid CEOs in 2011 was $14.5 million, according to a study conducted for The New York Times. The median pay raise among those CEOs was five percent. A full list is available here.

“The latest figures come as no surprise to many Americans,” said IAM International President Tom Buffenbarger. “They feel it every day. They live it. It’s time our nation’s leaders wake up and begin to address this economic crisis head on. Job creation and rebuilding U.S. manufacturing should be priority number one.”

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