The Federal Reserve said the median net worth of families plunged by 39 percent in just three years, from $126,400 in 2007 to $77,300 in 2010. That puts Americans roughly on par with where they were back in 1992. …

The recession caused the greatest upheaval among the middle class. Only roughly half of middle-class Americans remained on the same economic rung during the downturn, the Fed found. Their median net worth — the value of assets such as homes, automobiles and stocks minus any debt — suffered the biggest drops. By contrast, the wealthiest families’ median net worth rose slightly. …

Not only were Americans still facing significant debts, but they were making less money. Median income fell nearly 8 percent to $45,800 in 2010. The median value of stock-market-based retirement accounts declined 7 percent to $44,000.