by Charles Hugh Smith
Of Two Minds
While the view might be great from the top of the wealth/income pyramid, it takes a special kind of self-serving myopia to ignore the reality that the bottom 95% are not doing so well.
We’re ceaselessly told/sold that the U.S. economy is doing phenomenally well in our current slow-growth world — generating record corporate profits, record highs in the S&P 500 stock index, and historically low unemployment (4.9% in July 2016).
While GDP growth is somewhat lackluster by historical standards—less than 2% in 2016—it’s growth nonetheless. And the rate of consumer-price inflation is hovering around 1%; negligible by historical standards.
But this uniformly positive statistical view of the U.S. economy raises a question among those not in the top 0.1%: If everything’s going so great, how come I’m not?