Gen Xers Face a Unique Set of Financial Challenges

Their net worth was damaged more than that of other generations during the Great Recession.

I was born in 1957, at the peak of the baby boom, and I have felt the effects of that population surge for most of my life. Classrooms were crowded: My sixth-grade class had 42 kids, and my junior high needed temporary classrooms. When I started my career, competition for jobs was intense. But I also benefited from being a boomer. My family rode the economic expansion between the 1950s and early ’70s that was fueled by the population boom, and when I got my first full-time job (with the Kiplinger organization), I was able to sign up for the profit-sharing and pension plans. I bought my first home in 1987, and I have been rewarded by steadily rising home prices ever since.

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Mark Solheim
Editor, Kiplinger's Personal Finance

Mark became editor of Kiplinger's Personal Finance magazine in July 2017. Prior to becoming editor, he was the Money and Living sections editor and, before that, the automotive writer. He has also been editor of as well as the magazine's managing editor, assistant managing editor and chief copy editor. Mark has also served as president of the Washington Automotive Press Association. In 1990 he was nominated for a National Magazine Award. Mark earned a B.A. from University of Virginia and an M.A. in Writing from Johns Hopkins University. Mark lives in Washington, D.C., with his wife, and they spend as much time as possible in their Glen Arbor, Mich., vacation home.