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The Couple That Switched to a Savings Account

For Laurence Kramer, 56, and his wife, Ellen, 49, the best investment these days is a savings account earning 2%. The Kramers, once aggressive investors who devoted 10% of their annual income to buying stocks, got fed up with their brokers and stopped putting money into the market last March. "They all dropped the ball," says Ellen, who owns a designer-clothing boutique in Armonk, N.Y., where the couple lives. "It's `Oops, I just lost $500,000'--and then they don't return your phone calls." That's not all: Accounting fraud, they fear, will plague more U.S. companies. "The depth of the deceit is extraordinary," says Laurence, a lawyer. "It has made us gun-shy and has undermined the faith that we had in major corporations."

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