In an effort to bolster the country’s economic health amid the financial crisis, the Federal Reserve embarked on an ambitious monetary policy known as quantitative easing, the effects of which remain somewhat unknown.
But years into the program (and with its “tapering” seemingly on the way this year or early next), the investment environment continues to be dominated by central banks’ expanding balance sheets, says J.P. Morgan Funds’ David Kelly. Central banks abroad have similarly grown their monetary base. In effect, this has driven up asset prices in a far more dramatic way than it has wages, Kelly says.
The last few years have been far more lucrative for the wealthy than the average worker. Turns out rich people tend to do better from a skyrocketing stock market!
Take a look at this chart from Kelly showing global inequality. On the left, you can see the how global income is skewed to the wealthiest 10%.
But even more staggering is the chart on the right. In the United States, almost 75% of the wealth is owned by the top 10%. QE is of course only part of the story, but whatever the cause is, this chart is straight-up scary.