Nervousness and fear have taken control of the U.S. economy, leading to low investment amid a growing sense of inequality, economics professors Robert Shiller and Ken Rogoff have told CNBC.
"It's amazing how lackluster investment is at this point in history and it's a sign of some loss of 'animal spirits'," Nobel prize-winning economist Robert Shiller told CNBC at the World Economic Forum.
"There's definitely a nervousness, because it's not only low investment, it's at almost record low interest rates," he added.
"Animal spirits" is a term coined by John Maynard Keynes to describe the confidence to invest or spend.
U.S. public investment has suffered in the past years and a 20-year bull run in the fixed-income markets has been accentuated by liquidity injected into the economy by the U.S. Federal Reserve since the financial crash.
Longer-dated yields on sovereign bonds for many countries are now at record lows, and is a sign that fear had taken hold in asset markets, according to Ken Rogoff, an economics professor at Harvard University.