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33091, To be honest, it's tough, real tough|
Posted by M2, Wed Mar-30-05 03:14 AM
And I'm friggin sleepy so I'll just go quickly off the top of my head and share more later:
My basic plan for this year/retirement in general is as follows:
-I tend to be a Cash Whorder - so I need to invest more aggressively and not be so conservative. I'm afraid to lose money and that keeps my returns down.
-I need to make a stronger effort to make out retirement accounts, particularly because I'm going to have self-employment income this summer.
-I'm keeping an eye towards emerging markets in foreign countries, rapid societal change can create growth even if a particular industry isn't a "growth area" to G8 nations. Africa, Asia and Latin America are going to provide the growth in the 21st century, just via increased industrialization and economic development.
I think of it like this, if there is a town of 5,000 people where everyone has cable and all of a sudden 10,000 teenagers finish high school, rent their own apartments and become cable subscribers there will be growth.
Societal changes will be a key driver of economic growth, people just need to stop thinking of "growth" in terms of what's going to be a growth area for the G8.
(this is turning stream of conciousness)
-Commodities: People need Tin, Steel, Wood, Oil, etc, et. There are countries that haven't really gotten going with respect to tapping their natural resources, as the Global Economy grows, there will be demand.
-Read the Forbes Global Billionaire's list: you will find people who are making absurd amounts of money via selling rather mundane items and services. Nanotech and Alternative energy are cool, but people still need basic items like shoes.
Any product that can be sold profitably and in increasing amounts is a growth area to invest in.
-No matter what the economy is doing, Rich people seem to get richer? Why because there is always a way to make a lot of money, no matter what the economy is doing. Rich people know how to find these ways or hire people that can find them.
SO - if you do the basics, max out retirement accounts, live below your means, maximize your income via developing multiple streams or just doing well at work, and remember the above - you should be able to find "some way" to make money.
Yes, things look Bleak - but Warren Buffet just made $1.9 Billion by shorting the dollar in the 4th Quarter of 2004 ALONE.
Finally - remember that the old economic rules are over, you really need to dig deep and analyze the fundamentals of any potential decision before just moving forward with it.
For instance, in the Seattle area - it's about 15-40% cheaper to rent an Apartment than to Buy a nearly Identical Condo (depending on the units/location, etc). In one instance, I'm talking about an Apt. Complex (Garden Apartments) that was taken Condo and a nearly identical Apt. Complex accross the street.
I wanted to buy one of the Condos, until I saw that the Apartments accross the street rented for so much cheaper that I was saving 25%/month in cash flow (including the equity and tax benefits). So maybe "buying is cheaper than renting" isn't always true.
I would need one hell of a return on that property for it to be worth my while.
It's amazing how similar the properties are too.
You know, I'm not sure I really answered your question - but these are just some of the things rattling around my brain when I think of building wealth under today's economic conditions.