1 in 7 White Families Qualify as Millionaires; for Black Families, it’s 1 in 50

Fifteen percent of white households are worth more than $1 million, double the percentage in 1992. (iStock)
Fifteen percent of white households are worth more than $1 million, double the percentage in 1992. (iStock)

The share of white millionaires in the United States has doubled in the past quarter-century, with 1 in 7 white families now worth more than $1 million, according to new Federal Reserve data.

Fifteen percent of white families reported being millionaires, compared with 7 percent in the Fed’s 1992 Survey of Consumer Finances.

The dramatic growth in white millionaires reflects a widening economic gulf, with the top 1 percent of households holding 24 percent of income in 2016, a record high.

It also highlights a deepening racial disparity. The percentage of black and Hispanic households worth more than $1 million has remained around or below 2 percent since 1992.

“We have growing wealth disparities among whites as well, but the white group is so much further ahead that the class of elite blacks is nowhere near the class of elite whites,” said Darrick Hamilton, an economist at the New School in New York.

The accumulation of white wealth looks set to continue. The average white household, worth about $930,000 in 2016, will accumulate a net worth of more than $1 million by the time the next triennial survey comes out in 2020, Hamilton said.  (The reported average is skewed by wealthy outliers. The median white household was worth $171,000 in 2016.)

White families vastly outperform African Americans and Hispanics in several key indicators of wealth: homeownership and equity, investments, and inheritance.

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SOURCE: Tracy Jan 
The Washington Post