How Americans compare with the global population: 56 percent of Americans were in the high income class, compared with 7 percent of the world’s population.

by Rakesh Kochhar

By some key measures, the typical American household has slipped behind economically since the beginning of the 21st century.In 2013, the median income of U.S. households was $51,939, down substantially from $55,562 in 2001 (figures in 2013 dollars). In addition to two recessions – in 2001 and from 2007 to 2009 – longer-run trends such as globalization, the decline of unions, technological change and the rising cost of benefits such as health care are factors that limit prospects for many Americans.