The sky is falling, the sky is falling!
In Don Feder's article, "Demographic Winter' Exposes the Century's Overlooked Crisis" the author talks about how population growth across developed countries have been sinking considerably over the last 40 years. The author states that fertility rates have gone down 50% since 1968. In Europe, for instance, the average birth rate is 1.5, whereas the replacement level needed to sustain the population is 2.1. When the baby boomers pass away, coupled with our declining birth rates, is it possible that real estate and equity investments might decline for the majority of our lives? I think not only is it possible, but quite likely. Developed countries require growth, and never in history have we had economic prosperity accompanied with depopulation. Japan is already one step ahead of the U.S., as they never had the baby boomer generation to provide that final push. Japan saw their stock market fall over 80% in the last 15 years and watched real estate slip 60%. If we see the birth rate in the U.S. slip below the replacement level of 2.1, it's hard to imagine how investments/real estate could return anything at all. Maybe Dr. Tufte is correct in saying home ownership isn't such a great and secure investment! http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=25723