How will our families survive this financial shutdown in America?
Although the stock market crash of October 2008 experienced the largest point drop in history, there were no suicides on Wall Street that day. The real effect of the crash took a little longer to sink in. By March 2009, the market had been obliterated and subsequently collapsed to half of all previous gains. Over the years that followed, trillions of dollars were lost and the market continued to hemorrhage until 13% of the work force was gone. It was the highest and longest period of unemployment since the Great Depression of 1929.
After the 2008 crash, lavish lifestyles that America experienced during the previous decade ended in the highest home foreclosures, bankruptcies and college debt in U.S. history. The years of discretionary spending and savings had reached its end, and families wouldn’t begin to recover losses until the job market returned in 2018.
The last time the American job market had become this strong occurred when Astronaut Neil Armstrong first set foot on the Moon and uttered the immortal words, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.” Those words clearly resonated when unemployment in February 2020 dropped to 3.7%.
The “one small step” was the beginning of a strong job market, and with the “one giant leap,” America was on the road to prosperity. The days of home foreclosures, bankruptcies, business failures and other financial indebtedness were behind us. Just when we thought it was over, here we go again – another financial pandemic.
A New Financial Challenge
Having endured past unproductive years, we’re now facing a new financial challenge. Although our president, Congress, the stock market and financial institutions all report that America’s financial strength is strong, we’ve been asked once again to take personal financial setbacks. Because of the current viral pandemic and America’s challenge to combat it, we’re all making sacrifices causing the closing of businesses, laying off of workers, and nearly 85% of our population being asked to stay home until the all clear is given by the government that it’s safe to go back out. It’s a frightening time for everyone in America and throughout the world.
Even though we’re all assured by our leaders that America’s financial recovery will occur quickly following our ability to safely re-enter the workplace, there will no doubt be financial wounds. Will there be bankruptcies, foreclosures, business failures and individual financial indebtedness? The realistic answer is that there will be sacrifice but, understand, it’s no one’s fault. It’s the fault of an incurable viral pandemic that caught the world off guard.
Once America’s leaders give the all clear to re-enter the workplace, don’t hesitate to quickly seek professional assistance if you’re facing any personal financial impact caused by your stay-at-home confinement. We understand and are in this together.
Be safe all, and thank you for your sacrifice.