Paul Edelstein, director of financial economics for IHS Global Insight, said stock gains won't be a stable source of wealth generation for most U.S. households. He noted that the outlook for stocks is clouded by Europe's deepening debt crisis, slowing global growth and a looming political fight over the U.S. government's debt ceiling and expiring tax cuts and automatic spending cuts that could kick in at year's end.
The pickup in real estate values is a positive sign, Edelstein said.
"But with interest rates at rock-bottom levels, home prices unlikely to advance strongly and incomes growing anemically, there are few options right now for households to build their assets," he said.
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