Personal Wealth

  • Black couple holding sold sign sitting on porch of a house, photo by valentinrussanov/Getty Images

    Commentary

    To Help African Americans Gain Generational Wealth, Look to the Housing Market

    African American families have significantly less wealth than White families, even after reaching the middle class. Home ownership is, for the vast majority of Americans, the primary vehicle for accruing wealth, and passing it down through generations. This is a crucial time for policymakers to consider policies that focus on improving home ownership rates for African Americans.

    Dec 7, 2022

  • Illustrations of a black woman and a tree representing wealth, illustration by Pete Soriano, from Atlas Illustrations and dar/Adobe Stock

    Report

    Accounting for Black-White Wealth Differences

    Wealth accumulation is not solely determined by a person's choices and ability. Many factors affect individual wealth, including parental income, credit, and systemic discrimination. These factors have a cumulative effect and can lead to persistent disparities over generations.

    Dec 7, 2022

  • Illustrations of a black man and a tree representing wealth, illustration by Pete Soriano, from Atlas Illustrations and dar/Adobe Stock

    Report

    Overcoming Compound Racial Inequity

    Differences in Black and white Americans' economic status show how the harms of the past—slavery, segregation, discrimination—live on in the present. Could wealth allocations help to close the racial wealth gap?

    Dec 7, 2022

  • Illustrations of a black woman and a tree representing wealth, illustration by Pete Soriano, from Atlas Illustrations and dar/Adobe Stock

    Report

    Examining the Loss of Wealth and Downward Mobility of African Americans

    Black children who grow up in middle-class households are less likely than white children who grow up in middle-class households to replicate their parents' socioeconomic status. What key factors contribute to this disparity?

    Dec 7, 2022

  • 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

    Project

    Investigating the U.S. Racial Wealth Gap

    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.

    Dec 6, 2022

  • Journal Article

    Journal Article

    Saving Regret and Procrastination

    Saving regret, or the wish in hindsight to have saved more earlier in life, is widespread in older populations. Little of the variation is explained by procrastination and psychological factors. Unemployment, health, and divorce are larger factors.

    Nov 23, 2022

  • Street sign with Wall St. and Main St. signs, photo by BobHemphill/Getty Images

    Commentary

    A Tale of Two Americas

    Economic pain in the United States is obvious and palpable everywhere except in the stock market. This spotlights inequality that has been increasing for decades. Undoing disparities will require firm policy commitment over many years.

    Jul 9, 2020

  • Journal Article

    Journal Article

    Effect of Early-Stage Alzheimer's Disease on Household Financial Outcomes

    Our goal in this study is estimate, on net, the financial effects of early-stage Alzheimer's Disease, from the start of first symptoms to diagnosis, on individuals and their families.

    Mar 10, 2020

  • Journal Article

    The Effect of Housing Wealth Losses on Spending in the Great Recession

    This article represents the first U.S. study employing exclusively household-level longitudinal data spanning the Great Recession to estimate the response of household spending to negative wealth shocks induced by the sharp declines in house prices.

    Sep 20, 2019

  • Journal Article

    Journal Article

    Financial Knowledge and Portfolio Complexity in Singapore

    This paper reports the first analysis of older Singaporeans' financial literacy using a unique new dataset, the Singapore Life Panel (SLP®).

    Sep 20, 2019

  • RAND Weekly Recap

    Blog

    Shutdown, Hezbollah, Border Wall: RAND Weekly Recap

    This weekly recap focuses on Americans' financial fragility, Hezbollah in Venezuela, assessing the effectiveness of a border wall, and more.

    Feb 15, 2019

  • Woman seated on the floor, surrounded by bills and receipts, photo by David Sacks/Getty Images

    Commentary

    What the Shutdown Revealed About the Fragility of American Life

    The government shutdown highlighted the lack of resilience many suffer from when they encounter unexpected economic events. The median American family has been losing ground for decades. Policy responses to address this situation will be complex and difficult, but are much needed.

    Feb 11, 2019

  • Journal Article

    Journal Article

    Subjective Mortality Risk and Bequests

    The results of this paper show a strong empirical relevance of subjective survival curves, indicating the importance to take into consideration of this dimension of individual heterogeneity in life cycle models.

    Oct 6, 2017

  • New shoe and old shoe side by side.

    Commentary

    Trends in Inequality and the World's Eight Richest Men

    While Oxfam reports have done a good job of bringing attention to the problem of inequality, they may give the false impression that global inequality has been rising instead of falling. Global inequality has actually been on the decline while inequality within the developed world is increasing.

    Feb 10, 2017

  • Illustration of people thinking and organizing their thoughts

    Commentary

    Book Review: 'Bourgeois Equality'

    In Bourgeois Equality, economist and historian Deirdre McCloskey advances the theory that ideas — not capital, institutions, innovation, R&D, tax policy, monetary policy, or regulatory policy — are the propelling force behind economic and societal growth.

    Sep 30, 2016

  • A young man looking at a computer screen

    Commentary

    You're Never Too Young to Plan for Retirement

    Saving early for retirement is critical, but it's also important to stay on track during job changes. Younger workers tend to change jobs often, and if they cash out of their plans with each position, that can affect their long-term savings.

    Sep 2, 2016

  • Demonstrators march in the Occupy LA protest through downtown Los Angeles to City Hall on October 15, 2011

    Commentary

    Fixing Inequality of Opportunity

    Research has fueled concerns about how income inequality drives inequality of opportunity. Commonsense approaches such as improvements in education and access to quality health care have been shown to provide young people with better opportunities.

    Jul 6, 2016

  • Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange after an announcement by the Federal Reserve, October 28, 2015

    Commentary

    Zero Interest, Greater Inequality?

    Low interest rates mandated by the Federal Reserve may have had and possibly continue to have adverse effects on income inequality. Those who argue for continuing near-zero short-term interest rate policy should be cognizant of this.

    Nov 2, 2015

  • Colleagues discussing ideas

    Commentary

    Do Young 'Elites' Favor Income Redistribution?

    Young “elites” — employed Americans who are 40 or younger, with high household incomes and graduate degrees — and especially Democratic elites have a strong preference for income redistribution.

    Oct 8, 2015

  • Financial Advisor Talking To Senior Couple At Home

    Report

    Do Financial Advisers Influence Savings Behavior?

    Financial advisers can play an important role with helping individuals make better financial decisions and improving their financial situations. But does working with a financial adviser improve savings behavior, particularly saving for retirement?

    Oct 8, 2015