By Harriet Torry 

U.S. families' wealth broadly rose in the years headed into the coronavirus pandemic, with those in lower-income and lower-wealth categories reaping relatively large gains, the Federal Reserve said in a report on household finances.

As property and stock prices rose, households' median net worth, or wealth, rose 18% to $121,700 from 2016 to 2019, according to the Fed's Survey of Consumer Finances released on Monday. The report is produced every three years.

Families at the top of the income and wealth distributions experienced very little, if any, growth after experiencing large gains between 2013 and 2016, the report said. By contrast, families near the bottom of the income and wealth distributions generally saw their net worth continue to rise between 2016 and 2019.

Median household income -- the level at which half are above and half are below -- rose 5% to $58,600, before taxes and adjusted for inflation. The rise in incomes came as the economy grew 2.5% a year on average, inflation remained low and the unemployment rate fell.


(END) Dow Jones Newswires

September 28, 2020 12:20 ET (16:20 GMT)

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