middle class

So Long to America's Middle Class

What income defines the middle class? Is it a status to aspire to, or should we pity the middle class? And is middle class the new poor?

Viral Video Explains the Huge Gap Between the Rich and You

Considering the sort of things that usually go viral on YouTube, you might not expect a six-minute video titled "Wealth Inequality in America," to make the grade. But its powerful snapshot of the American economic landscape is grabbing attention in a way that years of pontificating pundits haven't been able to.

5 Ways Rich People Think Differently From the Rest of Us

After three decades of interviewing self-made millionaires, Steve Siebold, author of "How Rich People Think," has concluded that the wealthy just think differently about money than the middle class. Here are five examples of what he learned:

Fiscal Cliff Averted: 6 Things You Can Stop Worrying About

After months of lead-up, America finally went over the fiscal cliff -- for about 34 hours, before a bipartisan compromise was reached. So, with an eye toward the bright side, here's are six things that you no longer need to worry about now that the fiscal cliff has been averted.

Pop Quiz: Who Is Living America's Middle-Class Dream?

America's middle class has gotten a lot of attention in the 2012 election, but what, exactly, does "middle class" mean? If you've ever wondered -- and wondered whether or not you're a member of it -- take a peek at our middle-class quiz.

The Fiscal Cliff: Who Has the Most to Lose If We Fall Off

Beyond the land of presidential debates, the political arena is getting hotter. The pending economic catastrophe that is the "fiscal cliff" is drawing closer. But the broad numbers the pundits are tossing around hide some interesting truths about who'll feel the most pain if we hurtle over it.

Five Things to Look for During the Presidential Debate

Make no mistake about it: come Thursday morning, there will be a winner. If Romney wins, he will change the narrative of this election and give his flagging campaign some much-needed energy. If Obama wins, he has all but sealed up his re-election. If it is a draw, Obama wins because with so little time remaining Romney needed to do more than draw even.

Presidential Debate Preview: What They'll Say About Taxes

In Wednesday's much-hyped debate between Barack Obama and Mitt Romney, few topics will loom larger than taxes -- a subject about which the two parties and their standard-bearers are fundamentally, philosophically divided. Here's what you're likely to hear.

Safety Net Success Stories: Four Former 47%-ers Speak Out

On the heels of a leaked videotape in which GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney spoke harshly of those who pay no federal income tax, some now-successful Americans have been stepping up publicly to answer this question in the affirmative.

Romney: 'Middle-Income' Between $200K and $250K

Mitt Romney is promising to reduce taxes on middle-income Americans. But how does he define "middle income"? The Republican presidential nominee defined it as income of $200,000 to $250,000 a year.

The Real Source of the Middle Class' Money Woes

There are many reasons the middle class feels squeezed right now: unemployment, underwater mortgages, rising college tuition. But it's a combo of three other factors that made the 2000s a lost decade for average Americans: declining household income, shrinking net worth, and a smaller middle class.

Why Public Universities Are a Bad Deal for Your Kids

Here's a higher education shocker: Thanks to tuition hikes at California's state universities on one hand, and Ivy League financial aid policies on the other, attending Harvard is actually the better deal for the Golden State's middle class students. And that's not just a West Coast phenomenon.

How Can You Get Mitt's Tax Rate? (Hint: You Can't)

Amid all the chatter about Mitt Romney's high income and low taxes, many have wondered why more Americans don't take advantage of those attractive capital gains rates. The answer is that most people can't -- at least not on a level large enough to make a difference in their finances.

State of the Ecomony: 3 Things Obama Will Focus On

In tonight's State of the Union, President Obama faces a tough crowd: Millions of Americans unsure about whether he should keep his job. He'll be aiming to win hearts and minds, and at least part of that will be an appeal to our wallets. With that in mind, here are three key points that he is likely to hammer home tonight:

It's Official: Wealth Gap Is Our No. 1 Source of Conflict

Do you think that the biggest conflict in America today is between the rich and the poor? If so, join the club: According to a recent Pew Research Center poll, 66% of Americans believe the wealth gap is the greatest cause of tension in this country.

Fast Food's Biggest Fans: Not Who You'd Think

You'd think that fast-food restaurants -- with their emphasis on value -- would appeal primarily to those at the lower end of the income scale. But according to a new national study, dining at McDonald's and its quick-serving competitors becomes more common as people make more money.

Want to Influence Politicians? Stop Donating Money

Election season is coming, and politicians across the spectrum are already hunting for campaigns contributions. But with the vast majority of political donations coming from lobbies, corporations, and the wealthy, does it make sense for average taxpayers to contribute?

Income of Wealthy Tripled In 30 Years

The wealthiest Americans saw their income nearly triple in the three decades to 2007, substantially more than all other segments of the population, the Congressional Budget Office said Tuesday.