The stock market closed out a record year at an all-time high [at the end of the year] giving stockholders in 2013 their biggest annual gains in almost two decades.
But the real news here, that went completely unreported, is that the 2013 bull market widened inequality because
(1) the richest 1 percent of Americans own 35 percent of the value of all shares of stock, and the richest 10 percent own over 80 percent,
(2) the corporate profits on which these gains were based came largely from keeping the wages of ordinary workers low,
(3) the capital gains and dividends these gains generated are taxed at a lower rate than most of the income of the middle class, and
(4) the biggest winners are the top executives and Wall Street traders whose year-end bonuses are tied to the stock market, and the hedge-fund and private-equity managers whose “carried interest” loophole allows them to cash in big-time. When will we stop measuring the health of the economy by the Dow Jones Industrial average? —