Tag Archives: Investment

We Are All Investors

A recent post over at Poison Your Mind got my attention.  In it, nickgb ponders the assertion that we are all investors.

…I had a much different outrageous pull-quote to emphasize:

Romney’s opponents seem to be aghast that he has made money for investors (aren’t we all investors?), though they studiously ignore other greed-less facts: He never took a dime in salary for heading the Olympics in Salt Lake City nor as governor of Massachusetts, to mention a couple.

Those latter sentences are pretty stupid, because obviously Romney received gains from both of those ventures (both in reputation and financially). But aren’t we all investors? Who says that? Who still gets credit as a journalist after saying something like that?

So, I thought I’d take the bait and look into  how many of us are investors:

Not many.  At all.

In fact, the rate is depressingly low.  And even if we excuse the low number due to the economy the highest we’ve been is 67% back in 2002.

Before I could post this data, however, reflectionephemeral beat me to the punch.  The data he posted is below:

A revealing bit of data to be sure.  One more in the collection of charts that show the distribution of wealth is skewed.  However true that may be, the chart directly above doesn’t speak to investment participation.

At first I was struck by nickgb’s critique of the article, surely no one expects the reader to think that literally ALL of us are investors, but then when I saw the graph by reflectionephemeral, I was more struck by the thought process that would cause one of us to show data that explains the unequal distribution of wealth as the unequal distribution of risk.

Is it possible that as we all discuss this thing we call politic that we have failed to establish basic assumptions, have failed to agree upon a basic set of accepted bedrock givens?

I have full faith that the fellas over at PYM have the best interest of “folks” at heart.  I like to think that I do too.  Why is it that the two of us would take so different paths in responding to nickgb?