The term coming up at the moment is the “lost decade” which is pretty much how Western economies are currently looking but then again how much money has been squandered on speculations in the last 10 years at least 10 years if not 20 years worth. Madness being in the fact people keep talking about “growth” to get the economies back on track. Sorry growth? can’t anyone wake up and smell the coffee, the fact is you have these so called professionals and media talking about growth and measuring retail sales as a guideline. Sorry to tell everyone this WE ALL IMPORT MORE THAN WE EXPORT. Any retail growth is bad news for any economy its not a state of the nation in a way that’s going to improve its proof things are going to get worse.
People here in the Philippines may be out of it and retired in general but the Dollar and other currencies are taking a pounding proving that pensions aren’t going as far as they should be or were even a few months ago. Is it all doom and gloom? I have been saying since 2007 to always add 30% extra income in some form. If retired easy to find something to make up the difference but its a safety net. Problem is that 30% has grown if you live abroad in many countries more so in the Philippines due to its remittances keeping the peso afloat when it should be declining. In reality we have inflation in the Philippines that has caused rises as well as the electric and fuel cost rises adding at least another 30% to costs since 2007 at the same time watched 30% slide off sterling since then. In reality my money if coming from the UK I am down 60% in value compared to 2007.
Why did it go so wrong and is it going to get fixed? Economists are terrible at their job and I am not sure if its they are hired on “tell us what we want to hear” basis or the fact they are just bad. At the same time a lot of the data being analysed isn’t relevant while the stuff that should be is being ignored. How do you tell the state of a nation? It’s nothing to do with retail for a start as your only interested in Imports and Exports. Deduct the imports from the exports and you have surplus your nation is doing ok or good, if its negative its bad or in the world of today there isn’t only a negative but the inability to balance the books or pay off interest anymore. The fact is the economies need a real sharp jolt to get the countries working again. Big government is a big problem in many parts of the world and I could easily see 30% or more people removed from government sector in the UK without too much adverse affects. I have spent my life in government organisations and they are top heavy they need a completely independent assessment that will remove those at the top and work their way down.
Housing prices and speculative buying and selling also played a major part in this crisis but nobody ever mentions the fact we haven’t been paying our bills for decades we have literally just been covering interest if that and spending the rest. Yet the same people that tell us we should keep up our payments and if in financial trouble should contact them straight away (so they can cut off our cash flow) have been letting countries spend like champagne Charlie’s.
How this is going to affect the currencies at the moment its difficult to tell and its causing even more shudders in the stock markets. One thing for sure though is its going to be messy for some time. Politicians need to grow a spine and make some tough decisions at the same time we need to be looking at reducing our spending considerably. To be honest I look round and the writing has been on the wall everywhere for ages. But even this week I have had people telling me how good a deal property is in the UK as it “will recover soon”. Property should be one thing “a home” this speculation has cost us all even those that haven’t borrowed because we let the financial institutes control the governments. Its not only more regulation they need its removing completely from some sectors that can cause this mad borrowing and lending that got us where we are today.
For those in the Philippines living out a retirement I would say is its going to be tough. I will be heading back to the UK and expecting it to be tough there but with government reforms work availability should make life a little easier (as they need people like myself to audit and assist externally).
At the same time I won’t say buy gold or other resources as a lot of people are pushing this for personal profit in the same way all these “we will buy your gold” cowboy outfits appeared overnight to exploit the little true value people really have left.