In 2009, the median net worth (all assets minus all debts) of households headed by an adult ages 65 or older was 42% more than that of their same-aged counterparts in 1984. By contrast, the net worth of a typical household headed by an adult under the age of 35 in 2009 was 68% less than that of their same-aged counterparts in 1984. [...]
People generally accumulate wealth as they age, so it is not unusual to find large age-based gaps on this measure. However, the current gap is unprecedented. In 1984, the age-based wealth gap had been 10:1. By 2009, it had ballooned to 47:1.
I'm not sure how that's even remotely sustainable: How can young Americans claw their way back from a 68 percent drop in savings? No doubt a large part of it is directly due to the recession (young Americans have much less leeway, during hard times, than older Americans who have already accumulated reserves to fall back on) but this provides further evidence to the notion that Americans will be feeling the effects of the current economy long, long after it is officially "healed."