3 Things You Need Not Worry About The Economy

1.) Don’t worry about artificially low interest rates. Most of the time over the past 100 years “real” interest rates are about 3%, but if they come with high nominal rates of 9% then the after-tax and after-inflation return is zero. Today if you get 3% on a bond and lose 1.5% to inflation plus pay 33% tax (which is about 1% interest) then your after-tax and after-inflation return is 0.5%, so you may be better off than a retiree who earned 9% when inflation was 6% and taxes were 33% and who got an after-tax, after-inflation return of zero%. When people get high nominal interest rates they are fooled into thinking they are more prosperous than then really are so they overspend which destroys their retirement plan.

2.) Don’t worry excessively about the dollar getting devalued. Although one should be alert for trouble, history shows in forty years after the gold standard ended the fiat dollar has only dropped 0.8% a year against the major developed countries, which is less than the damage from inflation. It will go up against the Euro as the Euro will break up. Further, only 17% of expenditures are on imported things and domestic manufacturers can make substitutes for them if the cost of imports goes up due to devaluation.

3.) Don’t worry about the future of the country. Today’s young adults are smart enough not to trust the stock market and smart enough to boycott the housing bubble and be good savers. Skilled immigrants with college degrees are legally immigrating to the U.S. and stimulating the economy and generating tax revenues.

The U.S. economy and demographics are much better than the other developed countries.

Even though it is important not to worry about money you must still be prepared to defend yourself against investment mistakes.

About the author

Don Martin, CFP®

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