WHY HAVE U.S. HOUSEHOLDS INCREASINGLY RELIED ON MUTUAL FUNDS TO OWN EQUITY?
Review of Income and Wealth, 2005, vol. 51, issue 3, 375-396
U.S. households have increasingly used mutual funds to own equity outside of retirement accounts owing to two developments. The first is a decline in equity mutual fund loads, which are negatively correlated with stock ownership rates, which have doubled owing to greater ownership through mutual funds. The second is improved confidence in future family finances. Both effects are consistent with recent models of equity participation, in which lower asset transfer costs and lower income risk induce equity investing by middle‐income households, who—in practice and owing to diversification considerations—are more likely to indirectly hold stocks through mutual funds.
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Working Paper: Why have U.S. households increasingly relied on mutual funds to own equity? (2004)
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