Americans saw their wealth increase at the start of this year as the economic recovery boosted stock portfolios.
The Federal Reserve says household net worth rose by 2.1 percent in the first three months of this year to $54.6 trillion. It marked the fourth consecutive quarter that Americans' wealth grew.
Stock portfolios were the biggest force lifting net worth in the first quarter. However, since then, Wall Street has slumped, hurting investments.
Net worth is the value of assets such as home, checking accounts and investments minus debts like mortgages and credit cards.
Even with the first-quarter gain, Americans' net worth would have to rise an additional 21 percent to get back to its pre-recession peak of $65.9 trillion.
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