Americans are having a tougher time finding extra disposable income to save and create wealth. It is hard to plan for the future when you are worrying about having enough money to purchase a couple of frozen meals.
When looking at overall statistics we rarely get a glimpse at how tough things have become for the working and middle class. We usually get data discussing retirement account worth but most of these reports fail to acknowledge that 1 out of 3 Americans have zero dollars to their name. That is obviously an important caveat.
You also have a banking system that imposes predatory practices on those least able to afford it. Case after case has been reported of those living paycheck to paycheck while having to pay multiple overdraft fees that can range from $25 to $40 per charge. Banks realize they can simply place a stop but why let all this easy money free?
For those who can save and end up purchasing a home, most of the wealth is derived from home equity which in a nationwide housing bubble is like having all your money in one stock. Income is not a good measure of wealth.
The per capita income in the United States is $25,000 and after paying the mortgage or rent, healthcare costs, and buying food little is left over. What all these items point to is that retirement as many envisioned may largely be a fantasy that is only available to a select few.