Tens of millions of Americans are being left out of the economic recovery — and it’s easier than ever to see who they are

  • A report has found that more than 52 million Americans live in deeply disadvantaged, “distressed” neighborhoods.

  • Distressed areas saw declines in both jobs and business establishments during the national economic recovery.

  • Wealthy neighborhoods have dominated the recovery, generating 52% of the country’s new jobs.

A new online interactive tool helps Americans visualize just how economically divided the nation has become — and it’s not a pretty picture.

The country’s deep income and wealth inequalities, which match levels not seen since before the Great Depression, have been widely reported.

But the Distressed Communities Index, published by a Washington-based nonprofit called Economic Innovation Group, adds some startling new detail and localized specificity to the widening and persistent gap between the country’s rich and poor, the worst of any “advanced” economy.

The US economy has, on paper, been recovering from the Great Recession since the summer of 2009. Recently, growth has hovered around 2% a year, and the unemployment rate has fallen to just 4.4%.

Still, many have yet to feel the gains of this rebound, which is among the longest in modern history but also the weakest.

“It is fair to wonder whether a recovery that excludes tens of millions of Americans and thousands of communities deserves to be called a recovery at all,” EIG says in its Distressed Communities Index report.

– Business Insider

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