... shares outstanding in the U.S. contracted by at least $600 billion this year -- roughly 3.1% of the market's total value, according to TrimTabs.
"The U.S. equity market hasn't shrunk by that much in at least a decade. In 2005, the market contracted by roughly 2% and by less than 0.1% in 2004, TrimTabs estimates. From 1999 through 2003, the market expanded every year. (Percentages are based on the market capitalization of the U.S. equity market at the end of each year.)"