More Americans than ever are invested in the stock market

From the uncertainly over the pandemic to soaring GameStop stock prices, the past year has brought gyrations to the stock market. But who do those ups and downs affect? Dive into the info on assets and learn the income brackets of stock investors, plus how investment opportunities changed in the ’80s and ’90s. 

In 2019, 53% of families were invested in the stock market. While direct ownership of stock has been down, indirect investing (retirement plans and mutual funds) has risen. It will be interesting to get data from 2020 to 2021 to see if direct investment in stocks has risen. As one may expect, ownership rates are highest for middle-aged Americans, but those 65 and older own the largest share of stock.

  • More Americans are invested directly or indirectly in the stock market than ever. Data from the Federal Reserve shows that 53% of US families owned a publicly traded stock in 2019, up from 32% in 1989.
  • Indirect stock investments grew from 1989 to 2019, partly thanks to innovations like the development of exchange-traded funds in 1993 and Roth IRAs in 1997.
  • Families with a head of household aged 45 to 54 had the highest stock ownership rate. However, the value of owned stock is higher for older Americans whose investments have had more time to accumulate value. Head of households 65 or older held 43% of the total dollar value of stock in 2019, with median investments ranging from $84,000 to $109,000.
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Categories: Financial, Investing

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