Why Is the Stock Market Doing So Well While I’m Doing So Badly?

19 Apr Why Is the Stock Market Doing So Well While I’m Doing So Badly?

Jobs are bring cut. Housing prices have fallen off a cliff. Wages are stagnant. The “R Word”–Recession–now seems to be accepted by economists as what the economy’s in, and even the “D Word”–Depression–is being tossed about.

In other words, the economy’s in a mess.

So why is the stock market doing so well?

The answer lies in the fiscal disparity between the super-wealthy and the rest of us. According to “Pulling Apart: A State by State Analysis of Income Trends” by the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities and Economic Policy Institute, since the late 1990’s average incomes have declined 2.5 percent for families on the bottom fifth of the country’s economic ladder, while incomes have increased 9.1 percent for families on the top fifth. The result is that the average incomes of the top five percent of families are 12 times the average incomes of the bottom 20 percent. Middle class incomes have remained stagnant during this time, growing by just 1.3 percent in nearly eight years.

What does this have to do with the stock market? The market involves large corporations owned and funded by the people at the very top of the income scale. So long as these companies and individuals are doing well, so will the stock market, regardless of how normal folks do.

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Brett Weiss, a senior partner at Chung & Press, LLC, represents people and businesses in all phases of bankruptcy. He has experience in complex individual Chapter 7, Chapter 11 and Chapter 13 bankruptcy cases, and in Chapter 11 small business restructuring and reorganization. Mr. Weiss lectures nationally on bankruptcy issues. He has testified before the Federal Bankruptcy Rules Committee, the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, and has twice testified before Congress on bankruptcy and credit issues. Brett Weiss is the co-author of Chapter 11 for Individual Debtors, and has written Not Dead Yet: Bankruptcy After BAPCPA, for the Maryland Bar Journal, as well as hundreds of blogs for the Bankruptcy Law Network. With his law partner, he recorded a 13-hour basic bankruptcy training series, and leads intensive three-day Chapter 11 training boot camps. Mr. Weiss has received international media attention in connection with his work. He was interviewed by Barbara Walters on The View, has appeared on the Today Show, Good Morning America, ABC News with Peter Jennings, the Montel Williams Show, National Public Radio, AARP-TV, the BBC World Service, German state television, and numerous local radio and television programs, and been quoted in Money magazine, The Washington Post and The Baltimore Sun, among others. Brett Weiss is the Maryland State Chair for the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys, a founding member of the Bankruptcy Law Network, on the board of the Maryland State Bar Consumer Bankruptcy Council, and a member of the American Bankruptcy Institute, the Bankruptcy Bar Association of Maryland, and the Civil Justice Network. He has been recognized as a “Super Lawyer” every year since 2007 for Maryland and the District of Columbia, and in 2011 received the Distinguished Service Award from the National Association of Consumer Bankruptcy Attorneys for his work on behalf of consumers across the country. Mr. Weiss is admitted to practice before Maryland and District of Columbia federal and state courts, the United States Courts of Appeals for the DC, Fourth and Eighth Circuits, The United States Tax Court, and the Supreme Court of the United States, and has been practicing law since 1983.
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