Household net worth fell by 4% in the most recent quarter to $57.4 trillion, the lowest level since the Lehman Brothers bankruptcy in September 2008. Even more ominous: this is the second consecutive quarter that it declined.For Americans, home equity is the biggest source of wealth. With real estate prices soft at best, there is a natural hesitation to invest more or take other steps to create wealth.
"Going forward, you're going to see these ups and downs; the era of volatility is back. There's greater uncertainty among consumers," says Gregory Daco, the principal U.S. economist at IHS Global Insight.
He predicts a "hard landing" for the United States. As a result, Jim Rogers is short American and European stocks and long commodities.
Is Rogers right? Or is this another case of those "ups and downs" that Daco mentioned?
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