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The vanishing American dream: The economic realities facing middle- and lower-income Americans

Past Event

Introduction & 'Zoom-side chat’ on “The Vanishing American Dream”

Introduction & 'Zoom-side chat’ on “The Vanishing American Dream”
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Introduction & 'Zoom-side chat’ on “The Vanishing American Dream”

Buy Gene Ludwig’s book “The Vanishing American Dream” here.

In 2019, former Comptroller of the Currency Gene Ludwig hosted a bipartisan group of the nation’s foremost economic thinkers — academics and politicians, CEOs and former presidential advisors — to candidly discuss how middle- and lower-income Americans were being left behind despite economic indicators that painted a rosy picture. Even when the unemployment rate was near record lows and the stock market near record highs, the gap between low- and moderate-income Americans and their wealthier counterparts had become unconscionably wide, especially when taking into account racial disparities. The COVID-19 pandemic has destroyed the illusion that the country as a whole was thriving and presents an opportunity to create a recovery that addresses the economic injustice that threatens so many Americans. Ludwig’s book “The Vanishing American Dream,” to be released on September 22, shares the profound insights of the 2019 symposium and sheds light on the inadequacies of current economic indicators.

On September 16, the Future of the Middle Class Initiative at Brookings hosted distinguished speakers, including several of the symposium participants, to discuss the themes of “The Vanishing American Dream,” including the economic realities facing lower- and middle-income Americans, as well as potential solutions to rebuild a more inclusive American Dream for the long term.

Viewers can submit questions to or on Twitter using #VanishingAmericanDream.



'Zoom-side chat’ on “The Vanishing American Dream”

Panel 1

Janet L. Yellen

United States Secretary of the Treasury - United Stated Department of the Treasury

Former Distinguished Fellow in Residence - Economic Studies

Sarah Bloom Raskin

Former Deputy Secretary - U.S. Department of the Treasury

Distinguished Fellow, Global Financial Markets Center and Senior Fellow, Duke Center on Risk: Science and Society Initiative - Duke University School of Law

Panel 2

Closing remarks

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