What’s a person to do?
Inflation of every variety (wage, real estate core, non-core, etc.) are all up. If you’re trying to buy a house you are NOT happy. If you’re selling you’re thrilled. If you’re in the market for a job – (YAHOO for now) wages are up, but if you’re an employer trying to hold on to employees, good luck. At what point will someone clearly admit we are in or headed to a recession? Perhaps after the mid –terms, but that would mean economic numbers are political in nature – right??
In the meantime, here are a few suggestions for turbulent times.
1. Know your budget – What are you spending money on and are there spots where you might cut back?
2. Discretionary spending – The holidays are upon us and I’m sorry Mr. Ford, Toyota or GMC, this isn’t the year to buy a car as a gift. I realize not everyone buys cars for Christmas, but my point is to be a bit more realistic in your gift giving.
3. Hold onto your cash reserves. Three to six months of fixed expenses in something very liquid (checking / savings).
4. Don’t jump before you have a landing spot in employment. Yes, unemployment is at an all-time low. Yes, there is such a thing as quiet quitting. Yes, it appears that there are plenty of ‘Help Wanted’ signs but this will change, so don’t get caught mid-air.
5. Investment time horizon. We can all look at the stock market history and see that recovery happens over time. However, if you need to take money from you investments in the next year or so, make that part of your investment strategy.
6. Continue to invest in your 401k. As the admonition goes: buy low, sell high, now is low. If you have cash sitting on the sidelines consider investing; now is low. I was speaking to a client about this and told him I had just put money into the market and he appreciated knowing that. Did I buy at the absolute bottom, probably not, but NO ONE knows where the low is until after we begin (and sustain) a rise.
As a final thought, I just celebrated another birthday. Facebook wanted me to prompt friends and family to give to a favorite charity. While I appreciate the thought, asking for gifts doesn’t seem right. Here’s something I will ask for. Sometime in the next week take a moment with your favorite beverage or even an ice cream and raise a toast to your good fortune. I have a beautiful family who loves me, I have a great company, and though I struggle with health issues, I am enjoying life in the Napa Valley.
Here’s to all of us, Happy Fall!