Buy Corn! Sell Greece! The Best and Worst Investments of the Last 5 Depressing Years

Congratulations, world. It's been five years since the credit crunch began, and the global economy began to gradually -- and then all at once! -- implode. The good news is we avoided the abyss. The bad news is we didn't avoid a lost half decade. 

It's been a particularly bad time for equity investors. Stocks will hopefully be better in the long run, but the medium run has been pretty miserable -- in the United States, China, Great Britain, Germany, Japan, and especially in Greece. The chart below from James Mackintosh of The Financial Times shows us just how miserable, comparing the best and worst-performing assets since BNP Paribas unofficially inaugurated the credit crisis.

Best:WorstAssets.png

If you're looking for a good return on your money, you could have done a lot worse than piling into bonds and commodities. The former have risen in value as interest rates have dropped to historic lows, while the latter have surged due to emerging market growth and supply shocks. That's why we shouldn't read too much into corn's top performance -- our recent record-setting drought has sent their prices skyrocketing recently.

Hopefully we don't start seeing cash for corn shops springing up anytime soon.
Presented by

Matthew O'Brien

Matthew O'Brien is a former senior associate editor at The Atlantic.

What LBJ Really Said About Selma

"It's outrageous what's on TV. It looks like that man is in charge of the country."

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register with Disqus.

Please note that The Atlantic's account system is separate from our commenting system. To log in or register with The Atlantic, use the Sign In button at the top of every page.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

What LBJ Really Said About Selma

"It's going to go from bad to worse."

Video

Does This Child Need Marijuana?

Inside a family's fight to use marijuana oils to treat epilepsy

Video

A Miniature 1950s Utopia

A reclusive artist built this idealized suburb to grapple with his painful childhood memories.

Video

Why Principals Matter

Nadia Lopez didn't think anybody cared about her school. Then the Internet heard her story.

More in Business

Just In