Thursday, March 22, 2012

1955: Investment

This post is part of the Bonddad economic history project. The purpose of this is to go back through the US' economic history, year by year, to see what happened and why it happened.

In 1955, investments occurred on a variety of fronts.  The first quarter saw a huge increased in private inventories, while equipment and software contributed to the second and third quarter growth.  Inventories and business investment was largely responsible for investment growth in the fourth quarter.

The above chart from the Economic Report to the President shows the importance of a variety of construction to overall growth.  Industrial capacity was hitting its maximum, which required businesses to increase structural investment.  The housing boom was underway, leading to the increase in residential investment.

The above chart puts the early-mid 1950s construction boom into perspective.  Notice the incredible ramping up we see in 1954 in the residential area, but also how a variety of sectors contributed to overall growth. 

The above chart shows that real estate mortgages grew strongly for the four years of 1952-1055, but great an an especially strong rate in the 1955.

The Federal Reserve explained the mortgage market situation like this:

The overall state of business investment was explained like this in the ERP: