Despite reports that the U.S. economy is inching toward improvement, we now know that household incomes in the U.S. fell to levels we haven't seen since 1989.
In fact, Colorado Springs Chapter 7 bankruptcy lawyers understand that a recent report from the U.S. Census Bureau indicates that median incomes fell by nearly 2 percent last year.
Families are on the brink of poverty, and despite falling income levels, many families have not adjusted their lifestyle. This, unfortunately, is a recipe for becoming trapped in debt.
The current presidential campaign is dedicating a great deal of focus to why this is happening and what can be done to prevent it.
On a macro scale, some of the issues economists have identified include:
- Globalization. Technology and production power in the U.S. is not a strong, relative to other nations, as it once was. The U.S. will need to dedicate more resources to improving its workforce skill set.
- Inequality. With the decline of labor unions and the failure of minimum wage to keep pace with inflation, fewer people have the same opportunities to excel that they once did. This means we are underusing a valuable resource: Our people.
- Debt. Now, we're talking about government debt here, particularly with regard to more people receiving public assistance than are paying into it. It's important to note that without Social Security income, some 22 million more Americans would be living in poverty. But creating this safety net does come at a cost.
- Aging. This somewhat relates to the earlier issue, but as baby boomers continue to age and begin moving into retirement, we are going to see overall incomes decrease.
- Lower-wage jobs. There are multiple theories for why this may be, but at the end of the day, the job growth that is currently being generated happens to be within those industries that are lower-paying.
Whatever the causes, having a reduced income means making adjustments. In some cases, those adjustments are only possible with the help of an attorney who can help you either reach a debt settlement or apply for bankruptcy protection.