Money Gap or Motivation Gap?

This last week I heard about the Pew study that came out about Economic Well Being by age groups. Here is the very notable section:

Trends in household wealth reveal the pattern most vividly. In 2009, the median net worth (all assets minus all debts) of households headed by an adult ages 65 or older was 42% more than that of their same-aged counterparts in 1984. By contrast, the net worth of a typical household headed by an adult under the age of 35 in 2009 was 68% less than that of their same-aged counterparts in 1984.

I agree with a local radio personality here in Fresno, Inga Barks, who said that it is good that are seniors are more secure. And she pointed out that at 25 it is a lot easier to get a second job than at 65. And that is all true.
But through all the discussion I have heard there is some key facts that I haven’t heard taken into account. First off is the bounce back kid. Some of these college graduates are coming home to live off their parents until they are in their 30’s not because they can’t find any job but because they can’t find their ideal job. Also you have more and more college graduates who aren’t working their way through college but living on loans or mom and dad.

Could all this factor into the money gap? Is this really just a sign of how well our economy is doing because this young adults can afford to not work? What does this really mean?

3 thoughts on “Money Gap or Motivation Gap?”

  1. From the report: “In 1984, the age-based wealth gap had been 10:1. By 2009, it had ballooned to 47:1.”

    From Economic Policy institute chart it looks like the ratio of CEO pay to average product worker was about 40:1 in 1984 and about 185:1 in 2009.

    Seems like the pew results could be totally unrelated to motivation and more related to structural changes in the US and possibly worldwide economy which favor those with signficant capital savings getting richer and everybody else getting, well, not much.

  2. Interesting… I did want to let you know that the reason your second comment didn’t pop up wasn’t due to censoring;). Since it was just a link I had to hand approve it;).

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