Trends in Household Portfolio Composition Trends in Household Portfolio Composition

By Jesse Bricker, Kevin Moore, and Jeffrey P. Thompson

Using data from the Federal Reserve Board’s Survey of Consumer Finances, the authors explore how household asset portfolios in the United States evolved between 1989 and 2016—a period when household assets grew from about $25 trillion to slightly more than $100 trillion. The authors also track the evolution of wealth over time among birth-year cohorts and observe the standard life-cycle asset accumulation processes among low-, middle-, and high-income families. They also explore trends in the extent to which households’ balance sheets leave them vulnerable to financial shocks, and they examine the growing concentration of wealth.

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