Poverty Level in United States Sets 11 Year High

The income gap between the wealthiest 10% in the United States and the poorest 10% continued to widen last year as middle and lower class households took an especially hard hit due to the "Great Recession".

According to the Associated Press, the wealthiest 10% of Americans earned roughly 11.4x more than the poorest 10%, which represents the largest such gap in incomes on record. The previous high was set in 2003 (11.22).

The percentage of people living in poverty jumped to 13.2% last year, setting an 11 year high.

The "Great Recession" has hit everyone hard over the past couple of years. However, it is generally the "lower-level" workers that lose their jobs first in any recession, and the "Great Recession" has proven to be no different. The class of workers who tend to earn more money (managers, self-employed, etc) usually hold on to their jobs for a longer period of time, and this has resulted in the income gap growing into a chasm as less-experienced workers lose their jobs in droves.

Source: AP - US income gap widens as poor take hit in recession