Once upon a time, H. Ross Perot asked Americans to cup a hand to an ear, and listen to the "giant sucking sound." But this week, you don't even have to listen -- you can see the sucking happening. As a recent report out of the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis illustrates, March marked the third month in a row in which Americans upped their spending more than their actual incomes increased.
If you're invested in retailers who cater to American spendthrift-iness, this may sound like good news to you. But in this trend I see the seeds of the next crash.
Just as they did before the last crash, Americans are spending money they do not have. The difference today, though, is that they don't have the jobs to support that spending. They don't have the home equity. The inevitable conclusion (incidentally, also supported by pictures) -- they're drawing down a dwindling supply of savings to fund their chronic spending habit.
How long can this last? "Not long. 'Cause what you reap, is what you sow."
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