Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Bail-Out Bust

I am having a hard time reading about the economy. I just don't have the stomach for it, especially since there's nothing I can do about it anyway.

But it's always good to be informed, so to that end, here are some links.

— Business Week asked several economists about the possibility of a recession. The short answer is ... yes.

— The NYTimes tries to answer the question: Is your money safe? The short answer, if it's FDIC, should be.

(If you are thinking about moving some capital around, here's one question and answer from that piece:

Is it time to buy stocks?

A. Like gambling? This is a great time to make bets on the wide price swings that we’re seeing in some stocks and entire sectors of the market. Just be prepared to lose big, as plenty of professionals have done of late.")

— Kiplinger's has a list of 10 Things That Will Change once the smoke clears. Things like bigger mortgage down payments, fewer financial firms, greater scrutiny of executive compensation, and higher long-term interest rates.

Here's Kiplinger's take on buying now: "Investors with cash, the patience to wait out a gradual recovery and a heart stout enough to withstand periodic wild swings, will be in the catbird seat. They're positioned to make a bundle, snapping up undervalued assets -- businesses, real estate, securities, etc. Even out-of-work talent will go cheap to employers savvy enough to nab it."

— And the Wall Street Journal's Brett Arends is saying it's time to cut your expenses because that's the one thing you can control: "This is now a financial war: You versus the economy. And most Americans are badly prepared. They have far too little cash on hand to cope with a major downturn."

Oh, and just to add another take on things, here's what he says about investing now:

"Ordinarily in a panic like this I'd be urging people to invest. My usual approach is that the worse people are panicking, the more aggressively you should buy. And that might still be the right thing to do.

But the political and financial situations right now are chaotic."


Polar Donkey said...

I always like listening to Wall Street advisor types. If times are good, you should let it ride. If stocks are going down don't jump out because they will go back up. If times are bad, you should buy bargains! My only question is, when do average investors get out, because it seems like you should always be in or about to get in the market. Perhaps, Wall Streeters have a conflict of interest when advising small investors.

Anonymous said...

When there's blood in the streets, (like now)that's when real money is made. But the classic small investor rarely has the cash position, the saavy, or most importantly, the temperament, to take advantage, so stick with cd's and short term gov't bonds and maybe muni bonds.