Are you in the American middle class? Find out with our income calculator

American middle class

About half of American adults lived in middle-income households in 2016, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis of government data. In percentage terms, 52% of adults lived in middle-income households, 29% in lower-income households and 19% in upper-income households.

Our calculator below, updated with 2016 data, lets you find out which group you are in – first compared with other adults in your metropolitan area and among American adults overall, and then compared with other adults in the United States similar to you in education, age, race or ethnicity, and marital status.

STEP 1: See where you are in the distribution of Americans by income tier. Enter the location that best describes where you live, your household income and the number of people in your household. The calculator adjusts for the cost of living in your area.

Our new analysis shows that the share of adults who live in middle-income households varies widely across the 260 metropolitan areas examined, from 39% in Laredo, TX to 65% in Sheboygan, WI. The share of adults who live in lower-income households ranges from 19% in Ogden-Clearfield, UT to 49% in Laredo, TX. The estimated share living in upper-income households is greatest in San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA (32%) and the smallest in Lewiston-Auburn, ME (8%).

Related: The American middle class is stable in size, but losing ground financially to upper-income families

The calculator takes your household income and adjusts it for the size of your household. The income is revised upward for households that are below average in size and downward for those of above average size. This way, each household’s income is made equivalent to the income of a three-person household (the whole number nearest to the average size of a U.S. household, which was 2.5 in 2016).

Pew Research Center does not store or share any of the information you enter.

Your size-adjusted household income and the cost of living in your area are the factors we use to determine your income tier. Middle-income households – those with an income that is two-thirds to double the U.S. median household income – had incomes ranging from about $45,200 to $135,600 in 2016. Lower-income households had incomes less than $45,200 and upper-income households had incomes greater than $135,600 (all figures computed for three-person households, adjusted for the cost of living in a metropolitan area, and expressed in 2016 dollars).

American middle class

The cost-of-living adjustment for an area was calculated as follows: Jackson, Tennessee, is a relatively inexpensive area, with a price level that is 17.9% less than the national average. The Hawaii metropolitan area known as Urban Honolulu is one of the most expensive areas, with a price level that is 24.4% higher than the national average. Thus, to step over the national middle-class threshold of $45,200, a household in Jackson needs an income of only about $37,150, or 17.9% less than the national standard. But a household in Urban Honolulu needs a reported income of about $56,250, or 24.4% more than the U.S. norm, to join the middle class.

The income calculator encompasses 260 of some 380 metropolitan areas in the U.S., as defined by the Office of Management and Budget. If you live in an area outside of one of these 260 areas, the calculator reports the estimates for your state.

The second part of our calculator asks you more questions about your education, age, race or ethnicity, and marital status. This allows you to see how other adults who are similar to you demographically are distributed across lower-, middle- and upper-income tiers in the U.S. overall. It does not recompute your economic tier.

In Western Europe, Public Attitudes Toward News Media More Divided by Populist Views Than Left-Right Ideology

News Media

In Western Europe, public views of the news media are divided by populist leanings – more than left-right political positions – according to a new Pew Research Center public opinion survey conducted in Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom.

Across all eight countries, those who hold populist views value and trust the news media less, and they also give the media lower marks for coverage of major issues, such as immigration, the economy and crime.1

Trust in the news media dips lowest in Spain, France, the UK and Italy, with roughly a quarter of people with populist views in each country expressing confidence in the news media. By contrast, those without populist leanings are 8 to 31 percentage points more likely to at least somewhat trust the news media across the countries surveyed.

In Spain, Germany and Sweden, public trust in the media also divides along the left-right ideological spectrum, but the magnitude of difference pales in comparison to the divides between those with and without populist leanings.

When it comes to how the news media perform on key functions, broad majorities of the publics rate the news media highly for generally covering the most important issues of the day. This includes majorities of both those who do and do not hold populist views, though there are still significant differences in the magnitude of those ratings. More substantial divides between those two groups occur around how the news media do in covering three specific issues asked about here: the economy, immigration and crime. (See detailed tables for more information.)

Here again the UK stands apart. Even as the BBC dominates as the top main news source for British adults –by both populists and non-populists – there is still a large difference between the portions of these two groups who name it as their primary source. Just 42% of those with populist views name the BBC as their main news source, compared with six-in-ten among those who do not hold populist views. Left-right ideological differences do not emerge: roughly half on both the left (48%) and the right (51%) name the BBC as their main news source.

News Media

These are some of the key findings of a major Pew Research Center survey of 16,114 adults about news media usage and attitudes across eight Western European countries – Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Spain, Sweden and the United Kingdom – conducted from Oct. 30 to Dec. 20, 2017. Together, these eight European Union member states3 account for roughly 69% of the EU population and 75% of the EU economy.

Publics in Western Europe view news outlets as more partisan than what is reflected in their audiences

In each country, in addition to volunteering their main news source, respondents were asked about eight specific news outlets. These were selected by researchers to capture a range of news platforms, outlets with different funding sources, and diversity in their ideological leanings. Generally, people tend to describe outlets that they turn to for news as being relatively close to their own left-right political identity.4

This differs, however, from where the average audience actually sits politically. When asked whether people regularly turned to each of the eight outlets for news, the self-reported audiences of those outlets tend to cluster around the ideological center.