The folks over at Wisebread.com a personal finance and frugal living website, just published an article entitled, What I Miss About the Recession. I found the idea so fascinating, that I just had to put my two cents on paper, well…the internet I mean.
We all have memories of the Great Recession of 2008-2009. It’s all too fresh in my memory. For several years the economy has grudgingly gained speed, and really picked up in the last few months. I agree with Wise Bread that it is nice to have my clients happy, and the stock market reaching new highs, but I also miss some things about the recessionary years too.
You may be wondering what I could possibly miss about a recession, people out of work, and a stock market cut by 37%?!
Here’s what I miss about the recession, and what I’m looking forward to more of:
Everyone knows that the U.S. has one of the worst savings rates on the planet. Our economy is based on consumer spending, not consumer saving. So we are encouraged to go out and spend our hard-earned money on stuff we need, or don’t need. I do miss the savings mindset that occurred during the Great Recession. People were more likely to save money vs. spend it on something new. Saving increased and debt decreased during this time, and I really admired the mentality.
A Sense of Urgency
During the recession, there was a heightened sense of urgency about clinging to money earned as well as money already saved. There was less procrastination about socking money away. I really didn’t have to discuss why it was important for a client taking income to take a little less. It was already on their mind. Prospective clients were more likely to take a leap of faith and discuss new ideas from a new advisor too. There was a sense of urgency that they needed to get their investments right.
The Need for Advice
I also miss that clients called needing my advice more often. It seemed as though I met with a larger number of clients more frequently. Each of them eager to hear my thoughts about the economy and their investments. Financial planning became “cool” again. What I mean is, that financial planning gave people peace of mind, that even if their investments declined, they would still be alright. They needed the advice, and I was happy to give it.
I have to agree with Wise Bread and say that things have been gradually changing back. People are saving less, spending more and thinking that they really don’t need to update that financial plan a few years later.
Recessions are ugly, people lose jobs, the economy suffers and we all feel a sense of despair. On the positive side, I saw a greater sense of urgency, more savings and the need for advice.
Are you ready for the next recession?