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For Blacks, Income Ladder More Like Chute

Middle-class children much less likely to pass parents than whites
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Nov 13, 2007 7:07 PM CST
For Blacks, Income Ladder More Like Chute
   (Index Open)

(Newser) – Middle-class African Americans are much less likely to surpass their parents’ income than their white counterparts, a new study finds. Overall, two-thirds of American adults earned more than their parents, adjusted for inflation. But among the black middle class, 69% are making less. “Black children and white children do not have equal chances of moving up the income ladder,” the study’s author concludes.

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Theories surround the disparity, the Wall Street Journal says. Lower marriage rates and less asset-rich inheritances could have contributed. The gap persisted in other income levels, but less drastically: Among the poor, 90% of whites and 73% of blacks surpassed their parents. Overall, America looks economically mobile, with the majority of respondents ending in a different class than their parents. (Read more racial inequality stories.)

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