Out at the peak

Thursday, January 26, 2006

2005 House ATM: $600 Billion

"According to Federal Reserve estimates, equity extraction by US households topped $600 billion in 2005 -- more than enough to compensate for the shortfall of earned labor income. Comforted by this asset-based injection of purchasing power, consumers had little compunction in stretching traditional income-based constraints to the max. The personal saving rate fell deeper into negative territory that at any point since 1933, and outstanding household sector indebtedness -- as well as debt service burdens -- hit new record highs."
- Economist Stephen Roach, 1/20/06, Morgan Stanley

These people are gambling like stock traders with a 1:5 margin account.


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