Mar 3 2013

The Sequestered Gilded Age: Top 20 percent of households control over 90 percent of all stocks and financial wealth: Bottom 40 percent of all households have an average net worth of -$10,600.

Income inequality is now at levels last seen in the United States during the Gilded Age.  This was a time of incredible opulence for the few while the many struggled to get by.  There is even a story of a Mrs. Stuyvesant Fish throwing a dinner party to honor her dog that arrived wearing a […]

May 31 2012

The end game of global leveraged debt – double-digit percentage point market declines in Europe and Japan and the danger of refinancing debt with longer term debt.

There is a painful realization that shifting debt around like a game of musical chairs has little merit unless real production is achieved as an end result.  May was a disappointing month for markets in general.  While the S&P 500 certainly fell, markets in Japan and Europe took double-digit declines.  The massive amount of leverage […]

Feb 14 2012

The day of reckoning for global total debt – total credit market debt up from $28 trillion in 2001 to $53 trillion in 2012. US consumer debt went up in last few months but largely because of giant amounts of student loan debt taken on.

You have to really question what passes for financial analysis these days.  One financial show was discussing the recent increase in consumer debt as something positive.  In the same breath this person also said that households increased savings.  Now think about this statement.  If you financed a $2,000 vacation on your credit card but increased […]

Jan 16 2012

The sordid details of the employment market – Before recession hit 5,000,000 job openings were available while today there are 3,000,000. 1,000,000 Americans have completely quit looking for work and average duration of unemployment is 40 weeks, twice the amount of the 1980s recession.

There is a growing disconnect in America as the middle class is hollowed out.  Many Americans hear talks of a recovery that is now going on three years but look at their tight monthly budgets and wonder what recovery is being discussed.  The median household income is roughly $50,000 and with rising food, healthcare, energy, […]

Oct 24 2011

The glory of debt spending and casino financial markets. What is the typical income, tax situation, and household income for Americans? Americans claiming student loan deduction surges from 4 million to 10 million in roughly one decade. According to IRS AGI needs to be above $1 million to qualify for top one percent.

This weekend I spent time digging through IRS and Social Security data to get a better perspective on working and middle class Americans.  I find it amazing that in a consumer driven economy, meaning we live to spend in some respect that the media never even bothers to focus on household incomes.  Even on self […]

Oct 20 2011

Crossing the student debt point of no return – for-profit colleges have default rates now rivaling subprime mortgage debt. $1 trillion in student loan debt on the horizon while college graduate wages fall for the decade.

The student loan market is back in the news as it makes its unrelenting march to the $1 trillion mark.  This crippling figure comes in the face of a decade of lost wages for middle class Americans.  Just like the housing bubble people were supplementing a disappearing middle class with more debt.  The allure of […]

Oct 6 2011

How investment banks turned housing and student loans into a toxic and financial disaster – Middle class largest asset coopted by banking sector to raid and speculate on. Financial sector nearly 30 percent of all corporate profits in U.S. In the 1950s it was under 10 percent.

Most Americans pull their net worth from their investment in good old housing.  It is the biggest purchase most will ever make.  And because of this, after the Great Depression, housing was a boring yet stable investment class.  It had to be.  This is the cornerstone of wealth for most Americans.  Banks used to do […]

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