Richest 7 Percent Got Richer During Recovery, Report Says

English: Map of the United States.

English: Map of the United States. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The richest Americans got richer during the first two years of the economic recovery while average net worth declined for the other 93 percent of U.S. households, says a report released today.

The upper 7 percent of households owned 63 percent of the nation’s total household wealth in 2011, up from 56 percent in 2009, said the report from the Pew Research Center, which analyzed new Census Bureau data released last month.

The main reason for the widening wealth gap is that affluent households typically own stocks and other financial holdings that increased in value, while the less wealthy tend to have more of their assets in their homes, which haven’t rebounded from the plunge in home values, the report said.

Tuesday’s report is the latest to point up financial inequality that has been growing among Americans for decades, a development that helped fuel the Occupy Wall Street protests.

Read more:  http://readingeagle.com/article.aspx?id=471710

No Religion: Pew Study Finds Rapid Rise In Americans Without A Particular Faith

The number of Americans who say they have no particular religion has grown rapidly in the last five years, a trend that researchers say has significant implications for coming elections and American culture more broadly.

A report released today by the Pew Research Center’s Forum on Religion and Public Life found that 20 percent of Americans say they do not belong to any religion or are atheist or agnostic, the highest percentage ever recorded in Pew polls and about 5 percent more than those who said they had no religious affiliation five years ago.

Researchers attribute the growth in the ranks of the religiously unaffiliated – or “nones” as they are sometimes called – to changing patterns of religious participation and belief among younger generations and a “softening” of commitment to religion among some older Americans.  People who rarely or never attend church are also more likely to say they are not affiliated with any religion than in the past.

A third of adults under 30 say they have no religion, a much higher percentage than is found among older generations or was measured among young people in past decades.

Read more: http://thetimes-tribune.com/news/no-religion-pew-study-finds-rapid-rise-in-americans-without-a-particular-faith-1.1385152