From Thrift and Insurance to Everyday Investment
This chapter argues that contemporary financial market investment practices are not the consequence of the grip of some collective and irrational psychology, but are made possible because investment appears as the most rational form of saving. It shows that partial displacement of networks of thrift and insurance by networks of everyday investment both preceded the ‘irrational exuberance’ of the new economy bubble of the 1990s, and has continued to flourish into the new millennium after the bursting of the bubble. The chapter also suggests that while the technologies of investment form part of the apparatus of neo-liberal government and are promoted in a disciplinary manner across governmental programmes, to date the rise of everyday investment to the early 1980s would be to disregard sedimented technological developments that had already begun to establish the relative rationality of performances of everyday investment. This is illustrated in the final part of the chapter which focuses on the production of mutual fund networks.
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