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Americans' wealth hits new record in 1st quarter - WSJ Published: June 5, 2014

Americans' wealth hit a fresh record in the first quarter of the year due to a rise in home values and stocks, defying the headwinds of an economy weakened by harsh winter weather, the Wall Street Journal reports.

The net worth of U.S. households and nonprofit organizations—the value of homes, stocks and other assets minus debts and other liabilities—rose roughly 2%, or about $1.5 trillion, between January and March to $81.8 trillion, the highest on record, according to a report by the Federal Reserve released Thursday.

Much of the nation's rising wealth also goes disproportionately to the wealthy, since they're likelier to own stocks. The U.S. stock market rose again in the first quarter, with the broad S&P 500-stock index rising over 1% after a 30% gain last year, according to the Wall Street Journal.

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