American consumers love debt, wall street loves securitizing that debt and collecting massive fees for selling it and pension funds, with no viable alternative investments courtesy of accommodative Fed policies, love buying that debt for the extra 25bps of yield it provides. It's a "win, win, win", right?
Well, until it's not. While real median incomes in the U.S. have been stagnant for almost a decade, real household personal consumption has continued its steady rise as American's have simply replaced lost income with new debt. But, with household leverage near all-time highs and interest rates on the rise, we suspect this could all end very badly for the U.S. consumer and those pension funds that were forced to "stretch for yield."
Per a Bloomberg article posted today, the average U.S. household is carrying roughly $133,000 worth of debt, spread between mortgages, credit cards, auto loans, student loans and the newly-popular, crowd-funded, personal loans.