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American Worker Project

Middle-Class Economics

Busy Boston street

Cities at Work

book_alt2 icon Report Local governments need to take bold action to restore the middle class and ensure more access to it. Cities are an important and unique solution to many social problems.


The Decline of Colorado’s Middle Class

article icon Issue Brief Colorado’s increasingly unequal economy is harming the state’s middle class and threatening to undermine the state’s long-term prospects for growth.


3 Charts Showing How Middle-Class Incomes Continue to Stagnate While Overall Inequality Grows

These three charts present today’s new Census figures in a historical context and illustrate how the middle class has struggled to make headway in an increasingly unequal economy.

Fast-food workers' strike

Latest Census Data Underscore How Important Unions Are for the Middle Class

The decline of labor unions is an often-overlooked factor in the decreasing share of national income going to the middle class.

President Obama Ohio State

A Stronger Middle Class Leads to More Investment in Postsecondary Education

The rise in U.S. income inequality and the decline of the American middle class have skewed public policy toward the wishes of the rich and contributed to underinvestment in higher education.

President Barack Obama

Top 6 Policies to Help the Middle Class that Won’t Cost Taxpayers a Penny

There are a number of things that policymakers can do to strengthen the middle class that won't require any additional expenditures.

Middle-class family

States at Work: Progressive State Policies to Rebuild the Middle Class

book_alt2 icon Report State governments have a tremendous responsibility to help restore the promise of the American Dream, and can be part of the solution to rebuild a strong and growing middle class.

Nongyu Li, at left, holds his yet to be named newborn daughter alongside his wife Jennifer Gu

5 Charts that Show How Increasing Income Inequality Leads to Less Opportunity

bars icon Charts High levels of income inequality are strongly related to low levels of economic mobility and opportunity, as these graphs clearly show.

Occupy D.C.

4 Charts that Show How Rising Income Inequality Increases Pessimism

A series of graphs shows that high income inequality in the United States is strongly related to increased pessimism among Americans.

President Obama

The Evolution of President Obama’s Middle-Out Economics

The president’s economic plan released yesterday recognizes the importance of the middle class in producing economic growth.

Union members rally in

States with Stronger Unions Have Stronger Middle Classes

Strengthening organized labor is one of the most important steps to help rebuild our middle class.

Union rally

Unions Are Necessary to Rebuilding Our Middle Class

By advancing the interests of the middle class in the workplace and in our democracy, unions help build and strengthen the middle class.

5 Charts on the State of the Middle Class

bars icon Charts In five charts, David Madland and Nick Bunker show that the middle class faces a number of economic challenges.

Ties that Bind

article icon Issue Brief David Madland and Nick Bunker explain why rebuilding the American middle class is an important step toward rebuilding America’s infrastructure.