America’s Shift From Saving And Insurance To Investment

by David Jenyns on October 5, 2009

Nearly 12,500,000 people in the United States today play the stock market.

Only the man of wealth could afford to buy stock in significant amounts. In the minds of most, playing the stock market was a vast trap for the unwary.


For most people, capital investment meant buying a home. Only the man with surplus funds could afford to ride out market slumps and the temporary loss of income and value.

The Second World War lasted until the middle Forties. The nation emerged from the war hardly conscious of how greatly the basic economy had changed. Production for war had forced a gigantic expansion of industrial plant, much of it with the aid of government funds.

High tax rates and controlled profits encouraged further investment in facilities. Now, it is relatively easy for anyone to play the stock market — just search for “invest online” in your favorite search engine, and the results are astounding.

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