It’s no secret that most Americans haven’t kept up with the ballooning wealth of the 1 percent. Most of us have fallen behind over the last few decades, as wages have stagnated and housing, health care, and education costs have gone through the roof.
Underlying the yawning gap between the rich and the rest, however, is another divide: America’s persistent racial wealth divide between whites and people of color.
As the U.S. diversifies, people of color make up an ever larger share of the population, even as they remain largely locked out of wealth-building opportunities. As a result, although median white wealth has increased somewhat over the years, America’s overall median wealth is actually going down.