May 24, 2013
Wal-Mart Heirs: The Rich Get Way Richer
Posted on Aug 3, 2012
The six members of the Walton family featured on Forbes’ list of the 400 wealthiest Americans have a combined net worth today of $102.7 billion—more than the bottom 40 percent of American families combined.
The figure was tweeted by Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders in mid-July and confirmed by the Florida-based fact-checking outfit Politifact.
From 2007 to 2010, according to the Federal Reserve’s Survey of Consumer Finances, typical families lost 39 percent of their wealth. In 2007, the median family net worth was $126,400. By 2010, amid the financial crisis, it had dropped to $77,300.
In economics, wealth is typically measured in terms of net worth, which is defined as the value of assets minus liabilities—the amount owed in debt. Because net worth does not include income, someone who earns a good salary but has lots of debt can have a negative net worth.
—Posted by Alexander Reed Kelly.
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