Are Inheritances Helping Stimulate Consumer Spending Booms?
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Here’s a question I haven’t seen much discussion about. There are currently a number of spending booms going on, with the first I noticed — last July 4th’s orgy of backyard fireworks — being literally booming. For example, homes, home furnishings, cryptocurrency, etc. are up, up, up. There’s even a new way to waste your money: the Non-Fungible Token. (Note: in case there ever is an iSteve NFT, this dismissive characterization won’t, of course, apply to it, for reasons.)

Now, obviously, government policy is the main stimulus. But perhaps accelerated inheritances are playing a role as well? From JAMA Network:

Between March 1, 2020, and January 2, 2021, the US experienced 2 801 439 deaths, 22.9% more than expected, representing 522 368 excess deaths. … Deaths attributed to COVID-19 accounted for 72.4% of US excess deaths.

In 19th Century novels, like Jane Austen’s and Charles Dickens’, inheritance is a major theme. The topic has faded out of our popular culture, but I presume the real world effects remain nontrivial.

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