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Increase in Household Wealth - 6/23/15

America continues to get wealthier.  According to the Federal Reserve Bank of the United States, aggregate national household wealth increased by one point six trillion dollars during the first quarter, which translates into an annual rate of growth exceeding eight percent.  Total household wealth now stands at approximately eighty five trillion dollars. 

With the ongoing growth in aggregate household wealth, nominal wealth is now twenty five percent above its pre-recession peak and real per capita wealth is nearly five percent above its prior peak.  As indicated by Moody’s Analytics, movements in stock prices continue to represent the primary source of new wealth, though real estate related wealth also continues to expand.  Moody’s expects wealth to continue to expand, in part because home prices are expected to rise, further boosting the equity Americans have in their homes and diminishing the number of people underwater on their mortgages. 

Of course, gains in wealth continue to be unevenly distributed across households, with the already wealthy experiencing the largest gains in wealth since the end of the recession.  However, solid job growth coupled with rising wages should help boost the fortunes of a growing number of households during the months ahead.

Anirban Basu, Chariman Chief Executive Officer of Sage Policy Group (SPG), is one of the Mid-Atlantic region's leading economic consultants. Prior to founding SPG he was Chairman and CEO of Optimal Solutions Group, a company he co-founded and which continues to operate. Anirban has also served as Director of Applied Economics and Senior Economist for RESI, where he used his extensive knowledge of the Mid-Atlantic region to support numerous clients in their strategic decision-making processes. Clients have included the Maryland Department of Transportation, St. Paul Companies, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra Players Committee and the Martin O'Malley mayoral campaign.