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Opinion
Barry Ritholtz

The Thrill Is Gone From Owning Stocks

The democratization of investing has been laid low by the Great Recession and housing bust.
Be worried if he reads Barron's.

Be worried if he reads Barron's.

Photographer: Sarah L. Voisin/Washington Post/Getty images

Before the Great Recession, almost two-thirds of Americans owned stocks. That number has since fallen to a little more than half, as you can see from the chart below:

This is an important development with ramifications for retirement planning, demographics and income inequality.