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Clearly, Not Everyone Is Getting Rich Off The Stock Market

Well, the NY Fed was out today with its Quarterly Report on Household Debt and Credit for Q4 2017. Clearly, Americans are in a lot of debt. Take a look.

Just a couple of quick hits from the report. Total U.S. household debt rose $193 billion in the 4th quarter, to a new all-time peak of $13.15 trillion. That's 17.9% above the most recent trough in Q2 2013. Broken down by segment, what do you suppose was the largest gain in percentage terms? Credit cards, with a 3.2% increase. In the picture above, the widening gap represented by the red arrows reflects the fact that non-housing debt is rising at a faster pace than housing debt.

Here's what's troubling about that. Below is a picture of the stock market, as represented by the S&P 500 index, over that same period; from the most recent credit trough in Q2 2013 to the end of 2017.

And thus, the title of this article. Over that period, the S&P 500 index rose by 75%; from roughly 1,600 to 2,800. Apparently, however, the r…

ACTION ALERT: Added A Little T & VZ This Morning

Based on the principles I outline in this article, I added a small amount of AT&T and Verizon to the portfolio this morning.

My personal portfolio hit a recent high on March 17. This morning, I ran my personal report and evaluated the respective weightings of T & VZ as of 3/17 vs. this morning. Due to some recent uncertainty in the case of both companies, and a soft quarterly report from Verizon, their prices have softened and their relative weightings had slipped compared to the overall markets. I just thought it was a nice opportunity to pick up some dividends in the 5% range.


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