Economic Mobility of Families Across Generations

Source: Julia Isaacs, Economic Mobility Project, Pew Charitable Trusts, 11/13/2007

“Doing better” than one’s parents has long been a key element of the American Dream. The story embedded in our history suggests any person can start from humble beginnings and achieve great wealth, or at least reach the middle class. But are Americans today better off than their own parents were? How much does their eventual success depend on their family background?

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