[Excerpt] Household net worth, or wealth, is an important indicator of economic well-being in the United States. Median household net worth decreased by $5,046, or 6.8 percent, between 2000 and 2011.
The types of assets that households hold may vary across the net worth distribution. Therefore, dividing the overall net worth distribution into equal parts (e.g., by quintile) can provide additional insights into the well-being of each segment of that distribution. Given that business cycle changes over time may have a differential impact on the wealth of different groups, it can also facilitate analysis of how this well-being changes for different types of households over time.