Column Who is benefiting from longest expansion of economy?

worried couple with savings worried about running out of money!

We have now surpassed the longest economic expansion in U.S. history (since 1854!) this month and it’s officially, breaking the record of 120 months of economic growth from March 1991 to March 2001, according to the National Bureau of Economic Research.

Starting in June of 2009, our record-setting run saw GDP growing cumulatively by 25 percent, far slower than previous expansions.

While the unemployment rate has dropped to 3.6 percent in May, the lowest since 1969, job growth has been relatively slower than during other postwar recoveries. Our recovery obviously started way before our current president; however, he may take all the credit, (and provide no credit to anyone else).

However, the consuming public and small independent businesses have been the true crusaders and have really brought our country back from the catastrophe of our economic collapse in 2008 to its current stellar state and have made it shine and have set an example for its accomplishments to the rest of the world, whereby, quitters never win and winners never quit!

But the truth be told is in the real facts and figures so, go to if you want to check everyone’s statements for their accuracy and truthfulness to find out.

So it’s an amazing time in the U.S. for a certain percentage of the population and those that are entrepreneurs and independent business people and most importantly the real estate industry as a whole, for without us my belief is that the economy would not have reached its astonishing level of record-setting success.

However, I do realize that the economy hasn’t been good or great for everyone and I’m quite sure it’s different in every country; but those countries with smaller populations, the challenge of earning a living wage is connected to a multitude of reasons, which I will not elaborate in this column, but a future one.

Most important, those that aren’t earning enough should either think of changing their vocation, job or business, (get your real estate license) if possible, go back to school and learn a different trade that pays more, assuming you have six to 12 months or whatever is needed to pay your current and future bills, and, if possible, to start a side business to add a second stream of income to your current one.

For in order to purchase a home in the U.S. today, the average price is approximately $252,000, which may sound like bupkis (for those who understand Yiddish) and a ridiculously small amount of money for my readers, whose average value is $750,000 to a multiple of millions of dollars, but for many, is a struggle and thereby forces them to rent and make their landlords richer and more wealthier by handing over all the benefits.

Many of us live in a “bubble world” of lavishness, opulence and wealth way above a typical U.S. citizen or immigrant. More important, I believe is that it’s a new world out here and lazy and lackadaisical individuals, and there are plenty of you out there, need not apply and will have to accept their consequences later on!

But here are some scary but candid and upfront facts to dwell upon and deal with now and not procrastinate for another day: A great many people looking to retire one day, don’t have four hundred dollars extra saved to their name, or what some would say, “ and don’t have a pot to piss in” for emergencies, as per the Government Accountability Office.

I quote from the, “According to a 2018 study by Northwestern Mutual, 21 percent of Americans have no retirement savings and an additional 10 percent (1 in 3) have less than $5,000 in savings.

A third of Baby Boomers currently in, or approaching, retirement age have between nothing and $25,000 set aside.

Those between 55-64 have a median savings of $107,000, which is pretty shocking, considering we are supposedly considered the wealthiest country in the world, really? Today, one needs at least one million dollars to retire comfortably. The Economic Policy Institute paints an even bleaker picture.

Their data from 2013 reports that “nearly half of families have no retirement account savings at all.” For most age groups, the group found, “median account balances in 2013 were less than half their pre-recession peak and lower than at the start of the new millennium.” The EPI further found these numbers even worse for millennials. Nearly six in 10 have no retirement savings whatsoever. But financial experts advise that the average 65-year-old have between $1 million and $1.5 million set aside for retirement.
workers with savings.

If any of my readers or anyone you know are in this position, tell them to “wake up and smell the coffee” and make a change in their lifestyle and/or savings, because if you or they keep doing the same thing, expecting different results, it’s called “business insanity” or on an individual basis, “personal financial insanity.”
Philip A. Raices is the owner/Broker of Turn Key Real Estate at 3 Grace Ave. Suite 180 Great Neck. He has earned designations as a graduate of the Realtor Institute and a certified international property specialist.
He can be reached by email, at:Phil@TurnKeyRealEstate.Com, or by cell: (516) 647-4289.


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