Fewer Americans now than at any time in the past half century believe they're moving forward in life.
Americans feel stuck in their tracks. A majority of survey respondents say that in the past five years, they either haven't moved forward in life (25%) or have fallen backwards (31%). This is the most downbeat short-term assessment of personal progress in nearly half a century of polling by the Pew Research Center and the Gallup organization.
When asked to measure their progress over a longer time frame, Americans are more upbeat. Nearly two-thirds say they have a higher standard of living than their parents had when their parents were their age.
Read the full report Inside the Middle Class: Bad Times Hit the Good Life on the Pew Research Center Web site.