Here’s a feel-good moment from Citi regarding the growth of U.S. corporate and household balance sheets:
It is quite amazing… how much cash American corporations and households are sitting on, offsetting what is often perceived as a highly leveraged society. Moreover, balance sheets of S&P 500 companies look quite healthy and household net worth has recovered very impressively from the 2009 lows even as home prices have continued to erode. Thus, we suspect that the alleged demise of American stability and wealth is way overdone even as a good chunk of the corporate cash is overseas and thus subject to higher taxation if that money is repatriated currently.
There are some disclaimers of course. First, rising inequality means that wealth is concentrated increasingly in the upper class. Second, corporations hold much of their wealth abroad.
Still these charts show that America weathered the storm surprisingly well.
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