So only 51% of 30-somethings earn more than their parents at the same age? Have they looked at what MY PARENTS lived through? They were teen-agers and 20-somethings during a decade of the Great Depression, then WWII. Of course we earned more than our parents at 30 in 1970. My dad enlisted in the Marines at 33. It wasn't too tough to earn more than that in 1970. But let's flip that--30-somethings today certainly spend more than their parents did on phones, cable, leased cars, student loan pay backs, mortgages, eating out (which we did rarely, and my parents about twice a year), manicures, pets, etc. They and we also tithed our income, which keeps one from getting too frisky with the money coming in.
In 1970, 92% of American 30-year-olds earned more than their parents did at a similar age, they found. In 2014, that number fell to 51%. . . The percentage of young adults earning more than their parents dropped precipitously from 1970 to about 1992, to 58%.Of course, the authors give the usual pablum for correction--more education and more taxation. However, other studies show that 1999 was the record year of income, and that the top 2 quintiles hit a record income in 2015. The average household income in the top quintile is $202,366 and the bottom is $12,457. Also the number of earners in a household is vastly different. About 2.2 at the top and .45 at the bottom. It's very difficult for a household with one part time worker to keep up with one that has more than two.