Saturday, July 03, 2010

Put dead wealth to work for growth

We sure need some growth in our economy. Rich Karlgaard, the publisher of Forbes Magazine says there is a lot of wealth in America that is not invested. Being not invested it is sitting "idle;" putting it to work will help our economy going. He also hits tax rates and government spending, but his focus is on the wealth we can get to work. He has a colorful term for this problem. Here is a highlight:


... I would argue that Treasury Bills, gold holdings and an ANWR that is off limits to drilling are examples of dead wealth--that is, stored wealth that could create more wealth if put to proper use.

A current example of relatively dead wealth is the $1.2 trillion of cash and cash equivalents held by American publicly traded companies. In aggregate, the balance sheets of these companies have never been stronger. But that wealth is relatively dead. It is not being deployed for growth as aggressively as you might expect in the early days of an economic recovery. To bluntly switch metaphors, American corporations have a $1.2 trillion constipation problem.
The photo: OK, this is weak. Rich owns and flies a Cirrus light aircraft.

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