They don’t have any money.

I was saying that nobody seemed to bother to check the claim that defined-contribution pensions were cheaper. Nobody but weirdos like me ever suggested the following until now:

Once you account for falling wages among young workers—if you must: “the Millennials”—many mysteries of the economic behavior of young people cease to be mysterious, such as this generation’s aversion to home-buying, auto loans, and savings. Indeed, the savings rate for Americans under 35, having briefly breached after the Great Recession, dove back underwater and now swims at negative-1.8 percent.

Gee willikins! Could it be that they have no damn money? It’s not like this wasn’t obvious in 2006 or 2009 or 2011. Lost decade? Try lost 15 years.

3 Comments on "They don’t have any money."

  1. Well said.
    I used to have faith that evidence of these realities would eventually change British politics for the better. But it’s become apparent how little evidence can compete with the propaganda of a corrupted economics profession that sets the agenda of “realism.”

    My parents visited at the weekend, so naturally on Sunday morning Dad gets up to watch Andrew Marr. I’ve given up on TV politics for my blood pressure, so perhaps watching Chuka Umunna trapped inside the “what will you cut” frame was more painful because I don’t usually watch. Still, it was a very painful reminder that despite Umunna’s attempts, getting wage levels on the agenda rather than deficit levels isn’t going to happen any time soon.


  2. The thing to remember here is that, via both the revenue side and the tax-credit/housing benefit side, the wage problem is the budget problem. The K-man say look after unemployment and the budget will look after itself; in the precarious future, look after underemployment, and…?


    1. Maybe I’m just despairing because it’s been a rough week, but the whole “nation is like a family, you have to cut back spending, can’t keep borrowing” meme seems so potent.

      I’ve been arguing with my Dad about this since the crisis hit – so the best part of 5 years. And I usually get him to something approaching sense. Then I don’t see him for a while and the media noise has pushed him back into “we can’t keep spending this way.” He’s certainly as smart as the average (older) voter, so I feel it’s fair to think he’s representative of a wider problem.


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