The stock market leads the economy by 3-6 months and at the time of writing it’s already dropped almost as much as the 2008 banking crisis, with no signs of slowing down. This means the economic impact is still to be truly seen.
Of course, the trend could reverse and it’s very hard to predict the future, but it’s important to understand what is actually possible so you can prepare for it.
On the bigger macro level there is a high probability that the next year will see:
- Massive economic struggles, potentially WORSE than the great depression unfolding over the next 2 years.
- Record unemployment in decades, and as a result an increase in crime, bankruptcies, and homelessness.
- A cash-starved populous that has not saved during the previous periods of growth will expect to be covered by their governments during the hard times. Some countries will be better able to do this than others.
- Banks going bust and restrictions on holding or withdrawing cash. Governments will struggle to cover their insurance of bank deposits, and some people will lose their savings. (think of this like the 2008 banking crisis but bigger)
- Massive bailouts from the government which will fail to change the trend until it’s run its course.
- Deflation will happen and already is (it just won’t get recorded until about 3-6 months’ time). This means lower prices of goods, but lower wages too. It means the value of money increases relative to things you can buy like stocks, houses and groceries, but there’s less money to go around.
- Major debts written off and lots of bankruptcies. Deflation occurs because the masses of debt accumulated during the past decade of growth become written off, and so the actual amount of money in the system is less. Central banks will not be able to prevent this by printing money because to grow the supply of money means commercial banks need to be lending a lot of money, and people and businesses will stop borrowing due to fears about the future.
- Possible long-term and repeated quarantines and interruptions to normal business procedures for 3-24 months. While longer term is less likely, it is still a possibility. And fear, rather than science can fuel lockdowns. Especially with governments encouraged to be as strict as the next country to avoid looking bad. Also, there are currently many scientific unknowns (top scientists tend to talk about how much they don’t know and urge caution).
- More negative emotions among society and a less inclusive mindset… people will identify with smaller groups more like themselves and have an increasing distaste for people not in those groups. Whether it be political, ideological, race, or even food choices.
- An increase in distrust and blame between countries, with restrictions and damaged relationships between countries expected to increase. There will be an increase in ‘look after your own’ mentality vs ‘together we are stronger’. Also, help from other nations will be increasingly suspected as having ulterior motives.
- Government control. Many countries will have established precedence and laws to further control and monitor citizens, which will be supported by more people to keep society healthy. Expect this to be aggressively protested by those worried about authoritarian control.
- A backlash against large businesses and the wealthy, especially the previous winners who had questionable ethics. Expect Google and Facebook to come under major scrutiny for example, as well as the banking sector.
- A big increase in mental stress and mental illness among people as the pressures of life increase, and people struggle to adapt to difficult financial situations and rapid changes.
As we move into more economic troubles, people tend to also become more negative. In fact, it is even argued that the ebb and flow of society from positive to negative and back is a natural driving force behind these trends. It is called ‘social mood’ and is argued to be built into our biology as a society, and may have the benefit to correct wrongs in society.
In theory, social mood works like this: people begin to fear the future, so they borrow less money, don’t buy a house, etc. and the economy suffers. Thus a snowball effect begins like what we saw in the banking crisis of 2008. It’s a chance for society to fix what made it vulnerable in the first place and redistribution of wealth normally takes place thereafter.
Regardless of the causality, further social unrest and economic troubles will likely follow. We still appear to be very early in this trend and as it continues, the economy and many other aspects of society will get worse.
We will see people taking many actions driven by fear.
Just look at some of the top headlines around the world as I write this report…
- So many people are calling the suicide hotline because they were laid off due to pandemic
- The Federal Reserve is printing $1 million every second
- The typical US worker can no longer afford a family on a year’s salary, showing the dire state of America’s middle class
- Analyst anticipates ‘worst’ financial crisis since 1929 amid fears of a global recession
- Amazon faces a rash of strikes and protests at sites across Europe as warehouse workers lash out over what they say are grueling labor conditions, minimal protection, and the risk of infection after several employees tested positive for coronavirus.
- The British government is reportedly furious with China
- The US stock market has now wiped out the entire $11.5 trillion of value it gained since Trump’s 2016 election victory
- Pandemic-Related Unemployment and Shutdowns Are a Recipe for Social Unrest
- Bank of America posts 45% decline in first-quarter profit
- Unemployment Headed For 40-Year High
You can see the predictions I made earlier are in fact already in the early stages only weeks into the crisis. This is at a time when stocks clearly have much further to fall. Take a look at this graph of unemployment in the U.S:
As you can see from the image above, an economic disaster is certainly looming. Often major declines can retrace 50-75% of the previous growth… and you might think that sounds bad when you realize the U.S stock market doubled since the last recession. But even with this, it still has much further to drop. Dropping from 30,000 points to 14,000 is possible and would be a bigger recession than the 2008 banking crisis.
But look at the bigger scale and it’s even more worrying:
The bottom trend line shows just how far the stock market (and economy) could drop if it corrected within the trendline of the past 300 years. It’s over a 90% drop from the highs and something bigger than the great depression would follow. While it might not be so extreme, it’s worthwhile noting and not be blind to what is possible.
Regardless of how bad it could get, we are now in a period of tough economic times.
This can all sound very scary (and it is), but it doesn’t mean there is nothing you can do. You are far from helpless whether you have an online business, are freelancing, have lost your job, suffered financial hardship, or you plan to start an online business.
What has happened is terrible and what will happen will likely be terrible too. But as an individual, you don’t have much influence over that. You can only focus on what you can do.
If this is going to happen then we cannot change its direction, but it’s up to you how you choose to ride this wave. Will you find a way to flow with the momentum and stay safe or will you be crushed under its weight?
As you read through this report you will discover exactly what you can do and how you can prepare to make the best of a bad situation. You’ll also learn how to be in a position to support yourself, your family, and others in your community as well as beyond.
But not everybody will have such good intentions…
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