How the Economic Lives of the Middle Class Have Changed Since 2016, by the Numbers

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Based on a simplified extrapolation, it works out to about $122 gained a month for a typical family — which for some would be wiped out by higher mortgage rates.

The United States economy is the strongest it has been in ages. Growth has been robust, and the unemployment rate is at generational lows, as new data Friday affirmed.

Yet the Republican Party, which controls the White House and Congress, trails Democrats substantially in polling on which party is preferred.

It helps to look beyond the overall economic data to understand this disconnect. After all, you can’t eat G.D.P., and good jobs numbers aren’t the same as a place to live.

If you look instead at the actual financial lives of average middle-income families from 2016 — their incomes, spending, assets and debt — and how shifts since Election Day in 2016 would have been likely to affect them, you get a more mixed picture.

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