NC State Economist Dr. Mike Walden – “The Growing World Middle Class”


Mary:  This is Mary Walden with economist MW, welcoming you to the economic perspective.  Today’s program looks at the growing world middle class.  Mike, there’s been much discussion about the shrinking of the relative size of the middle class in the U.S.  But I understand this is not necessarily the trend everywhere in the world.  Give us some background.

Mike:  Summary Answer

  1. Middle class is growing in many countries in Asia, Eastern Europe, and Africa
  2. By 2020 expected to generate $10 trillion of buying
  3. As households move from subsistence level to middle class, creates changes in spending
  4. Change diet – more meats
  5. Purchase more consumer durables – electronics, appliances, vehicles
  6. And ultimately move on to luxury goods – including tourism
  7. For NC – economic opportunities – meats, manufactured products, and attracting tourists
  8. I’m MW

Mary:  And I’m Mary Walden for the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service