Stock investment, and other (relatively) high-risk transactions were done through separate entities.
Once those things were combined through the relaxation of regulation and the massive mergers of the 1980s to the present, we created the massive boom-and-bust cycles that we've been going through and financial sector profits rose from what used to be an annual average of approximately 8% of all corporate profits in America to nearly 32% of all corporate profits.
All of this, of course, coincides with the massive rise in CEO salaries and the stagnation of labor wages and the decline of tax rates for the highest earners.
What astonishes me is that they think they speak for 99% of the people, when their "protests" are pitifully tiny and most average Joes and Janes seem to be barely aware of their existence (if at all).
If they actually get, say half a million people to do this I'll be VERY surprised, but it still won't 'break the bank' or be more than a blip on the balance sheet.
Most people have barely heard of OWS and most will only hear about this as a 5 second soundbite on the news that goes in one ear and out the other.
Fiddling While Rome Burns
Carthago Delenda Est
"I used to roll the dice; see the fear in my enemies' eyes... listen as the crowd would sing, 'now the old king is dead, Long Live the King.'.."
There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old's life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.... John Rogers