U.S. Federal Reserve chief Janet Yellen said today (October 17, 2014) that she is greatly concerned over the widening gap between the rich and the poor in the United States, according to the Raw Story website.
Speaking in the city of Boston, Yellen said, "income and wealth inequality are near their highest levels in the past hundred years" and have widened during the economic recovery.
She noted the wealth gap has grown steadily over the past several decades, despite a brief pause during the 2008 crisis when the richest Americans lost money, and increased government spending helped offset losses for the less wealthy. "But widening inequality resumed in the recovery, as the stock market rebounded," Yellen said.
"I think it is appropriate to ask whether the trend is compatible with values rooted in our nation's history, among them the high value Americans have traditionally placed on equality of opportunity," Yellen said.
Robert Reich -- a top political economist and U.S. Secretary of Labor during Bill Clinton's presidency -- has been warning Americans in recent months about the seriousness of the wealth gap growth. Reich believes that unless the federal government takes action soon to eliminate this wealth gap trend, the American economy, as we have known it throughout our history, will inevitably become crippled and ineffective in the very near future.