Speed Reads

Spoiler: they're broke

The state of young America's finances, in two charts

The state of young America's finances, in two charts

Old journalists are constantly complaining about millennials. They have no motivation, they're coddled, they won't leave home, and on and on. But what's really happening here? Over at Demos, Matt Bruenig has taken a careful look at young America's balance sheet (for families below age 35) revealed in the 2013 Survey of Consumer Finances. He found two major results: first, that average net worth is down sharply from its 2007 peak, and has barely begun to recover:

Average income is also down, and worse, has continued to fall since the 2008 crisis:

When you compare the loss in net worth to the total lost income added up since 2007, the figures line up pretty closely. In short, like just about everyone else in the country, what young America needs is a raise. There's more over at Demos, including overall debt trends and a breakout of debt by loan category, so make sure to take a look.