Why the growing wealth gap within the wealthy?
Catherine McBreen, president of Spectrem Group's Millionaire Corner, said that millionaire households held more stocks — and therefore have benefited more from the market's run-up. It's not just a matter of money. Wealthier households also tend to make better investments, or at least more bullish ones, staying in the market during the recession while less wealthy investors bailed out.
Affluent households had more than half their investable assets in some kind of equities in 2005, but in 2012 it dropped to a third. Millionaire households have 71 percent of their investable assets in some form of equities — up from 61 percent in 2005.
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"The reason the affluents haven't recovered as quickly is their stock holdings," McBreen said. "Many of them simply pulled out of the market. They have more cash. But more of the high-net-worth households stayed in."
She said the millionaire households were more likely to be older and retired, so they could afford to keep more money in the market.
"The affluent group may be high earners, but they also might have high expenses like college tuition."
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