What it is:
Main Street refers collectively to members of the general population who invest in the capital markets.
How it works (Example):
Individuals and businesses that do not work for financial and investment companies are considered part of Main Street. Main Street should not be confused with Wall Street, which refers to members of the brokerage and financial services community. Main Street invests in the capital markets as investment clients through Wall Street.
Why it Matters:
Main Street investors grow their money in the capital markets through Wall Street's brokerage and advisory services. Wall Street depends on Main Street's capital to function and stay in business. Some people believe that the Main Street's interest -- to grow their money in the capital markets -- contrasts the interest of Wall Street, which is to generate profit.