AP U.S. History Diagnostic 25

AP U.S. History: Diagnostic 25. What led to the income shift shown in the image?

APAP U.S. History
AP U.S. HistoryExam
LanguageEnglish Language
Science and Technology Transforms SocietyStagnation of Real Wages and Growing Economic Inequality
Test PrepAP U.S. History
U.S. HistoryAP U.S. History

Transcript

00:18

And here are the potential answers.

00:19

[ mumbles ]

00:25

All right, well, let's start by getting a grip on the graph.

00:27

This is a distribution chart

00:29

of annual household incomes,

00:31

so each bar represents what percentage of the population

00:34

makes that level of income.

00:36

And we can see that it's heavily weighted to the left,

00:39

meaning that most Americans make much less than

00:42

the small group way down on the right end of the chart.

00:45

That trend is not so trendy.

00:47

Did this income shift to the left occur because of A -

00:50

a decrease in the number of publicly traded companies?

00:54

Huh. A decrease in the number of publicly traded companies? Huh?

00:57

With all those IPOs going around?

00:59

Uh, no, that would reflect a decline in income across

01:02

all brackets, probably, so that nixes A.

01:05

Could this shift have happened because of B -

01:07

increasing numbers of Americans graduating from college?

01:10

Well, actually, an increase in the number of college grads,

01:13

as well as growth in the information technology sector,

01:15

has caused some incomes to rise,

01:17

but only enough to sustain the median.

01:19

So that eliminates B and D.

01:21

Which means that the income shift to the left was the result of C -

01:25

a decline in manufacturing jobs and unions.

01:29

This decline eroded middle class wealth and caused

01:31

incomes to drop, so C is the right answer.

01:34

And because of this shift, the majority of the nation's

01:36

wealth is now concentrated in the so-called one percent,

01:39

who must be very happy.

01:41

[ sobbing ]

01:44

[ whirr ]