Borrowed From The Future

Warren Buffett and the Business of Life – Alice Schroeder /via @HuffingtonPost

Although average wages in the United States had risen only 0.6 percent a year since 1998 and consumer confidence had been declining steadily, GDP had risen 2.6 percent a year. This was an artificial increase–boosted by an $8.6 trillion increase in personal indebtedness and an almost $20 trillion increase in household net worth–that came from rising real estate values and the stock market. In essence, consumer debt had inflated the economy beyond its real size. This economic “growth” was simply borrowed from the future, and would have to be paid back with interest.

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