Quartz explains that most Americans, not just the poor, have no safety net in a series of charts based on the Federal Reserve’s most recent Survey of Consumer Finances – which is based on 2013 data.
The picture is not as bleak if you include retirement accounts – and there are two other charts that illustrate this further. But it’s sobering to see that despite the economic recovery, most Americans are still living paycheck to paycheck regardless of income.

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Fernando Diaz is a senior editor for Reveal, overseeing coverage of labor and privacy and surveillance. He has spent most of his career in Chicago, working at newspapers, magazines and websites, including as managing editor of Hoy, a Spanish-language daily newspaper. He has served on the boards of several nonprofits, including the Chicago Headline Club and the National Association of Hispanic Journalists. He is a member of Investigative Reporters and Editors and The Society for News Design. Diaz is based in Reveal's Emeryville, California, office.