Barack Obama wrote in the Financial Times recently that it’s time to rescue the masses from their mortgages. He’s got a plan worthy of a leading presidential contender. He says he’ll impose fines on the bad lenders…and give the money to the good voters (oops…we mean, the good homeowners). Just what you’d expect. A safety net for everyone.
The ratio of houses-to-be-sold to those sold, has risen to its highest level in 16 years. Foreclosures continue to rise. And now credit card defaults are rising too.
But here’s some good news:
“WASHINGTON (AP) – Five years into a national economic recovery, the share of Americans living in poverty finally dropped.
“The nation’s poverty rate was 12.3 percent in 2006, down from 12.6 percent a year before, the Census Bureau reported Tuesday. Median household income increased slightly, to USUS$48,200.”
Hey, wait a minute. We’ve been reporting that Americans are getting poorer. How could there be fewer poor people? Something is wrong here.
And here it is, in the next paragraph:
“Individual earnings dropped for both men and women in 2006, but more members of each household worked, resulting in the overall increase in household income, said David Johnson, chief of the Census Bureau’s Housing and Household Economic Statistics Division.
“The numbers provided some good economic news at a time when financial markets have been rattled by a slumping housing market. But they were tempered by an increase in the number of Americans without health insurance, from 44.8 million in 2005 to 47 million last year.”
Wait a minute again…how is it good news that people are earning less money…but working harder and longer in order to keep up household income? Here’s a suggestion that will double household income – the Joneses can move in with the Smiths…the Newtons and Smallskys can combine households too. Hey…presto…greater household incomes.
Markets and Money
Are people getting richer or poorer? Leave a comment below.