Investigating the U.S. Racial Wealth Gap

A man's profile in front of an abstract image of branches and hundred dollar bills

Illustration by Kekeli Sumah/RAND Corporation, from Andre Hunter/Unsplash and Pete Soriano/RAND Corporation, from Atlas Illustrations/Adobe Stock and dar/Adobe Stock

The gap in wealth between Black and white Americans is a product of historical realities that continue to shape economic outcomes. Policy interventions to address current wealth disparities must understand the long-standing inequities that contributed to them.

To help inform those policy discussions, RAND researchers have investigated how wealth is accumulated, the potential effects of particular policy responses, and the social mobility prospects of African Americans. The discussion papers in this series will be followed by future research efforts.

Discussion Papers

Funding for this research was provided by gifts from RAND supporters and income from operations. Questions should be directed to