There's no monolithic middle class. Middle class comes in three categories:
(1) Lower middle class-$37,000-$50,000 per annum.
(2) Solidly middle class-$50,000-$ 75,000 per annum.
(3) Upper middle class-$75,000-200,000 per annum.
Lower middle class is near the lower socioeconomic class than they are the middle class. This is the LEAST educated sector of the middle class with a high school education being the highest level of education achieved. This is the upper echelon of the laboring class, blue collar class, & the lower white collar class of clerical & semiprofessional workers. This sector of the middle class is struggling socioeconomically w/ the rising costs of living. They aren't a comfortable class. They are a glorified version of the lower class. There is really no difference between the lower middle class & the lower class if one thinks about it. They only have monies to purchase the rudiments & only very little, very few extras. They are about 1 to 1 1/2 paychecks away from homelessness.
Solidly middle class is the quintessential middle class. This is what people perceive & know as middle class. This middle class is college educated & consist of low to middle level professionals & managers. This sector of the middle class is somewhat comfortable. They have enough money to take care of the rudiments w/some left over for savings & to purchase the extras which make their lives comfortable. They may even have enough to take internal vacations yearly. They are about 2 to 3 1/2 paychecks away from homelessness.
Upper middle class is the haute middle class. This is the MOST educated sector of the middle class. On average, they have either advanced degrees or majored in a specialty. They are doctors, lawyers, executives, & high level professionals. They are more than comfortable. They have enough money to purchases the extras. Besides having savings, they have monies allocated for investments. They have the money to take external vacations yearly. They may even have ONE summer home. They are about 4 to 6 paychecks away from homelessness.
When I worked, I was solidly middle class, edging into the upper middle class. Since I am retired, I am middling but still comfortable & not struggling socioeconomically. I can still eat out twice weekly.