How both middle-class and wealthy American families are sliding inexorably into the red

MarketWatch photo illustration/Everett Collection
These days, even $500,000 per year doesn’t go far in some cities.

Not even a high six-figure salary is enough to keep New York City families out of the red. But spare a thought for the average American family, whose costs easily outpace the average income.

A recent analysis from Sam Dogen at his personal finance website Financial Samurai showed how difficult it is for high earners to escape the rat race in New York City, one of the priciest places to live in the world. He analyzed a mock budget for an imaginary family of four in which the two 35-year-old breadwinners each make $250,000 a year.

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