The Washington Independent
The Washington Independent

Behind the Occupy Wall Street slogan ‘We Are the 99%’

Last updated: July 31, 2020 | September 29, 2011 | Frazer Pugh

The Occupy Wall Street protests that started in New York and have now spread to cities including Chicago, Boston and San Francisco (and coming soon to Texas), with more adopting “We are the 99%” as their unifying slogan. In a time of rising unemployment and falling living standards, what are the numbers behind this slogan?

-The top 1 percent take home 24 percent of the national income.

  • Nearly one in six people are in poverty in the U.S.
  • As The American Independent reports, there were a record number of women in poverty in 2010.
  • Since the recession began, the unemployment rate for young people has climbed as high as 52.2 percent.
  • In the African-American community, the unemployment rate is the highest it has been in 27 years, at 16 percent.
  • According to a report by The Washington Independent, the unemployed commit suicide at two or three times the average, and the rate goes up the longer they have been unemployed
  • Defaults on student loans, especially at for-profit universities, have risen substantially. Fifteen percent of borrowers at for-profit colleges defaulted in the first two years of repayment, while 8.8 percent of borrowers over all defaulted in the fiscal year ending Sept. 30.
Frazer Pugh | I work in the investment management sector as a professional. Previously, I advised top financial services companies on balance sheet management, portfolio planning, and valuations as a consultant. I am currently pursuing a part-time MBA at Melbourne University, where I am a lecturer in accounting and hedge fund strategies, as well as a mentor/coach in a part-time equity analysis initiative. I have a bachelor's degree in economics, a master's degree in finance, and am a Chartered Accountant. I enjoy instructing and assisting others in achieving their objectives.

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