Americans actually spent more than they earned this past year, sending the savings rate to negative for the first time since the Great Depression. In my naive little world I point to a few things to cause this. Fuel costs ate in to what little savings people had going into the year. The values of Americans are getting worse. More people than ever would rather own an ipod or smoke cigarettes than save. And last but not least, the rich get richer and the poor get poorer. It has never been more true. Interest rates are rising and the wealthy either have things paid for or a fixed rate mortgage. Less wealthy have credit card bills and adjustable rates which are getting higher each month. This data does not surprise me and all you have to do is stand in line at a convenient store and you will be able to get all the data you need. Just stand in line and watch what people are buying. Some are putting their money to their retirement but it’s called Lotto.