Tuesday, September 03, 2013

The 5% recovery: Why most are still in recession

(USA Today) How strong the economic recovery has been since the Great Recession ended in 2009 probably depends on viewpoint.

For those in the top 5 percent, the recovery has been pretty good.

As for the other 95 percent, well ... maybe not so much.

Post-financial crisis wealth disparity has been well-chronicled.

Federal Reserve Gov. Sarah B. Raskin drew widespread attention with this speech in April that showed how poorly the lower income levels have fared during the recovery, particularly because those demographics have their wealth concentrated in housing and are hit far more severely by falling prices.

The unemployed in lower-income groups also take a hit because they have a more difficult time finding jobs that pay at a rate commensurate with the positions they lost.

Finally, history has shown that highly accommodative monetary policy widens income disparity by awarding speculators and penalizing savers. While the S&P 500 is up nearly 150 percent since the March 2009 lows, that's most helped those heavily invested in stocks.

The University of California, Berkeley has produced some seminal research on this topic.

But this series of charts, put together by Charles Hugh Smith at oftwominds.com, helps put the sharply skewed recovery into perspective.

Read full article here.


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