The greatest depression of our times

On the bright side, we can say we’re living through the greatest depression of our times. That’s one way to look at it, right? It’ll seem all romantic a couple of decades down the line. For now, it just Hoovers. Everyone I know — and we’re by no means rich — has lost a lot of money in the recent economic downturn. All of my friends at work contribute the maximum matched amount into their corporate 401K accounts, and everyone has also lost more value than the amount contributed by the company — that’s down by over 33%.

The only silver lining to this is that now we’re getting lots of stocks through our 401K plans really cheap. It probably doesn’t make up for the downturn in the first place, but having an economic recession at the beginning of your career is definitely better than having one at the end of your career. Small comfort to those near retirement age though, of course (like my parents).

A lot of people have been asking my take on this crisis, which is flattering, but I don’t know much more about the root causes of it than anyone else — nor really what a good solution would be. All I can say is that if you have a high risk tolerance, you’ll be able to get a lot of stocks really cheap at the moment. Wait until the market stops its nosedive, of course, then make your move. Other than that, I guess we can all continue to hope that things will get better sooner rather than later, for the sake of humanity as a whole. This just isn’t an American depression: with the interconnectedness of today’s markets, it’s a global depression, and if things keep on going on like this, it will seriously impede humanity’s march of progress. So that’s the bigger picture to keep in mind in all of this.

4 Responses to “The greatest depression of our times”

  1. William (green) Says:

    That’s the first time I’ve heard the phrase “humanity’s march of progress” and the first thing that popped into my mind was a 6 billion people marching down an endless road in the desert.

  2. Cyde Weys Says:

    Humanity’s march of progress may very well end with an expanseless desert on this planet, but hopefully not before venturing off to the stars.

  3. Peaches Says:

    I also can’t help but wonder that despite the horrendous downturn that we’re going through at the moment is it not a good time to start buying up stock? buy for a dollar now sell for two later?

  4. Jeff V Says:

    is it not a good time to start buying up stock? buy for a dollar now sell for two later?

    It is a GREAT time! Not only will it be a sound long term investment strategy but it will help the economy in the short run. 401kers will stop the hemorhaging of funds out of the market and thus make the market rise.

    When this type of buy and hold strategy is done as a movement it becomes a self fulfilling prophecy!