The following is from American Colonies: The Settling of North America by Alan Taylor. It tells about the global economy in the 18th century as it impacted American colonists.
The effects of war, the easy movement of goods across the seas and immigrant labor have long made a difference in how people live. It also seems veterans have always been easy to discard when their service is completed.
“……the growing number….. of urban poor alarmed contemporaries. The poverty seemed especially glaring because it was such a contrast with the increasingly conspicuous wealth of the lawyers, merchants, and government officials in the seaports. According to tax records, in 1771 the wealthiest tenth of Bostonians owned more than 60% of the urban wealth, while the bottom three-tenths owned practically virtually nothing.