Investor Alert

Jan. 22, 2022, 9:12 a.m. EST

No, Wharton students, the average U.S. worker does not make $800,000

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By Steve Goldstein

The University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton is genuinely regarded as one of the finest business schools in the country — U.S. News & World Report ranks it second, behind only Stanford.

But these aspiring giants of the business world could use an education in real-world economics.

Nina Strohminger, a professor of legal studies and business ethics, tweeted that she had asked students what the average American makes. They did not do well.

The tweet triggered a firestorm of responses, mostly along the lines that these students were out of touch.

One Twitter user linked to New York Times data, showing the median family income of a student from Penn is $195,500. And that’s for the university as a whole.

As for the real number, the Social Security Administration put the average U.S. annual wage last year at $53,383, and the median wage at $34,612.

In the fourth quarter, the Labor Department said median weekly earnings were $1,010, or an annualized $52,520.

Read on: U.S. jobless claims jump to three-month high as omicron bites

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