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Here's how the economy can recover



By Dian Vujovich

Somewhere around 10 years ago, I pitched my contact at a book publisher about a book I wanted to write titled, “It’s not about the money”. Her first response was, “It’s not?”

Last year a book with that title was published. It focuses on investing. I had a larger purpose in mind—to write about how not to get lost living our lives in a world that’s become too money myopic. Or put another way; there’s more in life than money.

Well aware that we all need boatloads of the stuff to live, and a stash of even more to retire, depending upon our age we tend to buy different items at different times in our lives.

There’s a great chart that shows how the average 65- to 74-year old spends their money today vs. how they spent it 10 years ago. It’s from a Wall Street Journal story and you’ll find it and the story at: http://tinyurl.com/2fckoaj .

Since baby boomers are the trend setters these days, once they’ve reached that retirement age status the piece reports that they don’t spend nearly as much as they used to on things like food, eating out, clothes, new cars or furniture. Nope, this group of gray hairs—of which I am one—is truly health focused. Seems as though once they get to the land of more-than-ever aches and pains, they spend their moola on health care, health insurance, gas for their old cars, pets and drugs. And from what I’ve experienced, that’s all true.

I guess that shouldn’t be surprising but it has added one more layer of worry to Wall Streeters concerned about when the economy will recover.

Here’s my advice to them: Wall Street will recover when banks begin openly lending to individuals, existing small business owners and entrepreneurs without expecting a high Beacon score, asking their blood type or for their first born.

Wall Street will recover when corporate America wakes up and begins hiring again; offers their employees stable old-fashioned defined benefit retirement plans that include good health-care choices and benefits that aren’t taken away in an M&A deal; pays its fair share of taxes and doesn’t hide profits through advanced accounting shenanigans even though they can; and changes its focus from how their stock is performing to respecting and appreciating the fact that a) they’ve got a business, and b) realize that it’s the employees—not the head honchos or board members—who have made, and will continue to make, that business exist and/or thrive.

And how about corporations do all of that on their own without government intervention or tax deals. Now wouldn’t that be something.

As I wrote a few graphs above, there is more in life than money. One of those more’s has to do with appreciating, respecting and rewarding the people who make your life and your business hum along.


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