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NEW YORK — Consumers shifting away from traditional bank accounts to higher-yielding investments may be one of the reasons for the lowest level of bank deposits in the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp.’s 74-year history.

As a percentage of assets, total deposits at more than 8,700 insured banks and thrifts were at an all-time low, the Wall Street Journal reported in a Jan. 12 article. In 1989, U.S. households deposited 30% of their financial assets in banks, according to the Federal Reserve. By 2004 that had declined to 17%, while the amount of money in stocks, bonds, mutual funds and retirement accounts grew to 69% from 50%, the publication reported.

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