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Gene Ludwig

The Vanishing American Dream

A Frank Look at the Economic Realities Facing Middle- and Lower-Income Americans

Disruption Books 2020

NBN Book of the DayNBN Special SeriesNew Books in American StudiesNew Books in EconomicsNew Books in FinanceNew Books in Peoples & PlacesNew Books in PoliticsNew Books in Politics & SocietyNew Books in Public Policy September 28, 2020 Daniel Peris

Gene Ludwig cares. The former banker, government regulator, and serial entrepreneur cares deeply about the hollowing out of the American middle class over the...

Gene Ludwig cares. The former banker, government regulator, and serial entrepreneur cares deeply about the hollowing out of the American middle class over the past several decades, not least of all in his hometown of York, PA. So he gathered the country’s best and brightest in 2019 for a conference at Yale Law School to come up with specific policy proposals that can reverse that process.

The details of what has happened make for difficult but necessary reading. In The Vanishing American Dream: A Frank Look at the Economic Realities Facing Middle- and Lower-Income Americans (Disruption Books) the policy proposals to rebuild the middle class are divided into those at the federal level, and those at the local level.

Many readers will find the former typical and expected, but the latter constitute the most engaging part of the book. Both sorts of policies will be hard to implement given the country’s current state of division, but Ludwig does not back down from the challenge.

Gene Ludwig is the founder of the Promontory family of companies and Canapi LLC, the largest financial technology venture fund in the United States. He is the CEO of Promontory Financial Group, an IBM company, and chairman of Promontory MortgagePath, a technology-based, mortgage fulfillment and solutions company.


Daniel Peris is Senior Vice President at Federated Investors in Pittsburgh. Trained as a historian of modern Russia, he is the author most recently of Getting Back to Business: Why Modern Portfolio Theory Fails Investors. You can follow him on Twitter @HistoryInvestor or at http://www.strategicdividendinvestor.com