Opportunity Knocks In A Two-sided Economy
With a bulge of money on one end and a bulge of people on the other, the barbell economy of the US is now well understood. This was loudly illustrated by the scores of “Occupy” movements in 2011, which pitted “the 99%” against “the 1%.” And income inequality has grown over the past several years. According to the Federal Reserve, the top 1% of US households control 34.6% of the country’s wealth, while the bottom 90% only control 26.9%.
In 2012, incomes of the top 1% increased 19.6%, the highest increase since 1927, while the income of the bottom 99% grew by only 1%. The rich continue to get richer as the poor have become poorer, and the middle class is practically a nominee for the endangered species list. It’s a trend that may bode well for retailers that serve the extreme ends of the economic spectrum.
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