Bing Blog

Recession? Inflation? Help is on the way!

Toilet Paper Money

I took a look around the blogosphere this morning, and it's clear we're in need of some kind of assistance.

Half the places offer guides for how to deal with recession. The other half give us how-to's on what to do about inflation. The third half give us both. Do the math. Something's not right.

The recession guides offer a bewildering array of interesting facts, approaches and common sense bromides. The take-away, pretty much, is that we're supposed to spend wisely, save with sagacity, hunker down and don't lose heart.

The inflation guides often involve purchasing the right stuff in the right places, save what we can, and also do some hunkering of some kind. 

Frankly, the whole thing confuses me a lot. I've read a bunch of them, on both sides, and it's hard to differentiate between what to do in a recession and what to do in an inflation. Both situations seem to involve: 

  • Some balance of saving and spending
  • Some form of hunkering
  • Patience
  • Keeping your job if you have one and/or getting one if you don't
  • Eating a diet low in saturated fat and salt

I'm kind of doing all those things, but I don't feel prepared for a sustained inflation, for example. In an inflationary environment, the idea of responsibly saving seems counter-intuitive to me. If my money is dwindling in value, shouldn't I spend all of it while it's worth more?

If we're in an recession, why should I put my money in a bank the way so many pundits, economists and assorted wisenheimers suggest? Shouldn't I be stimulating the economy? Isn't that my duty as a citizen?

On the other other hand, why are we now required to read up on strategies for both recession and inflation. This seems unfair to me. I would like to be worried about only one economic Armageddon at a time. I realize these things come in threes, though. Recession. Inflation. What's next?

Let me know what you think, if you have the time. What would you find more helpful in this space: 

  • More thoughts on what to do during a recession, from one every bit as capable as the next idiot; 
  • Additional wisdom on strategies during inflationary times, offered by an individual whose level of expertise is never in doubt;
  • A guide to the third alternative (please tell me what it is and I'll do the guide). 

In the meantime, why don't we all take the rest of the day off? Sure, it's summer. But that's a strategy that's never out of place at any time of the year. 

25 Comments Add Comment

In the meantime, why don’t we all take the rest of the day off?

... because we'll lose our jobs if we take the rest of the day off. :(

third alternative is Stagflation - inflation during a recession as in the Jimminy Carter years.

advice -
Save more
hunker down
be patient
keep your job at all costs
eat less and exercise more (and stop smoking if you still do)

To combat inflation, spend all your money today buying all those cool gadgets before they become unaffordable using your low interest credit cards.

Your defense against recession, is to somehow guarantee your income (an effective way is by blackmailing your boss), avoid the layoffs that are bound to occur at alarming rates.

For the investors, this is a time for foreign stocks and currency trades, since the combined effects of the inflation and recession leads to dwindling value of the dollar...start making investments in some foriegn currency. Be careful though, because timing is critical!

Well all I gotta say is that as soon as I get some extra duckets I am putting all of them in Evergreen Solar, as well as any up and coming company offering nuclear energy.

Weblogs are for entertainment and therapy, not research. The harsh reality of living in the 21st century is that things are just as bad now as they've ever been and today we have the technology to learn about it. Instantly. Repetitively.

Most Americans wilfully ignore their financial situation. When eventually their credit cookie crumbles, these conspicuous consumers coagulate in the blogosphere for a therapeutic whine and cheese soiree. Instantly. Incessantly.

Conscious thought processes are subjugated to the instant simian gratification of cyber-nitpicking.

We are monkeys with toys.

President Roosvelt led the U.S. out of the Great Depression with W.P.A., C.C.C. Camp, and various programs promoting Public welfare through 1941 when WWII erupted.

During the 1960-63 recession J.F.K. was President when the CEO of U.S. Steel raised the price of steel $5.00 a ton; J.F.K. ordered CEO Homer ro roll the price back because it was inflationary. Roosevelt and Kennedy had testicular fortitude.

1973-76 Oil Embargo: "NIXON" initiated a national speed limit "55 MPH". The piano playing
President merely succeeded in initiating "ROAD RAGE" and "TRAFFIC TICKETS".

In the 1980-82 recession "REAGAN" initiated "TRICKLE DOWN ECONOMICS": (give the money to the rich for investing to create jobs for the poor). Bullshit!!

2000-02 recession was the collapse of the "CLINTON HOOPLA"; the enron loophole, the tech bubble, Y2K bubble, the housing bubble. "PUT THOSE SHADES ON AND BLOW THAT SAX MAN"!

2003 G.W.B. flew onto an aircraft carrier and announced the ending of "GULF WAR". He failed to define what year he meant.

Testicular fortitude has given way to honey do and honey don't coon traps.

Reccession, inflation and next comes unemployment and civil unrest with corruption and decay on a scale you cannot imagine.

Conserve, think small and efficient, prepare for worse things to come, pay off your debt or declare bankrupcy and start over.
Don't worry about being poor there will be many others that will join you.
Become self sufficient, relocate before those empty spaces fill up with the droves that will exit the stagnant cities. Don't expect help from goverment, they will be to busy trying to maintain law and order to help you.

Another way:
Job will come back in few years, why not getting trained in the meantime. Recession means good deal, inflation means you will loose your money. So find a good deal to live to Mexico for few months or years, spend your money as a good rate that will anyway disapear if you don't use it, come back with the next boom in few years, new skills ( Spanish speaker) and ready to get a good job since you know the country which is growing now.

Option 3. Just continue lampooning the fools who believe that you can continuously rewrite the fundamentals of economics, finance and business. The rest will take care of itself. Stand back and watch the lemmings run off the cliffs in droves while sipping on a tall cold one.

I want to know daily how to live my life, what to do (on a daily basis because it seems to me that life changes DAILY instead of yearly-like the good old days). I want to know about other people and how they are managing. I want to hear success stories-do you have any of those?????

help me, Bing. the third rail is who chooses to spend our money despite the economic dynamic duo you describe. is there a difference between Democrats and Republicans? i suspect not. one group of multi-millionaires throws our taxes at those 'less fortunate.' the other group of multi-millionaires throws our money at those 'more fortunate.'

Ill tell you whats next DEPRESSION!!! Get ready for it its coming

I came to US from Ukraine in 1992. We had similar situation with inflation, maybe it was 100 times worth. But those who invested money in real estate, gold, steady currency actually kept their wealth. My grandma chose to put money in a bank. In a year all she could buy with her life savings was a box of matches.

OK...Third Option:

Why don't you write about what it is I'm doing (becuase IT IS ALL about ME): Ignoring the economic woes of today (given it far exceeds my brain capacity to comprehend, much less develop some kind of plan which takes into account all the facts, as well as my fear and loathing), and take the epic professional gamble and start your own business while others stare at you not knowing whether to laugh behind your back at your ignorance, or laugh directly infront of you - - which some have.

Should I listen to what a wise man once said "When everyone else thinks you're an idiot becuase of the decisions you make, its time to change your way of thinking and make different decisions." Or listen to the other guy, the wise-guy, that said, "If no one agrees with what you're doing, just's your life!"

Don't worry. Be happy.

Geez, If the Fed's can't stop printing money and become a good steward of the money supply, maybe there would not be inflation. They do a good job of keeping us ignorant of the system. Maybe it's time to go back to the gold standard.

It's called an adverse aggregate supply shock due to the booming commodity fiasco. There is not much the fed can do since there is a short term tradeoff between inflation and unemployment according to the phillips curve. Did'nt you learn anything in macro 101?

Recession? Inflation? How about a little stagflation. The worse is yet to come. My advice? Gold, gold, gold, and a little platinum. Throw a little currency in there for good measure, maybe a few TIPS and start eating canned beans and corn. Good luck y'all!!
PS: Bing you're awesome

The only solution is to meet me at the tavern for a frosty cold one. I'll get the first round! The pols are not even through screwing up the economy much less ready to focus attention on fixing it.

When were talking about government bailouts of brokerage houses by the Feferal Reserve its no mystery that Americans are struggling to survive. In fact Bernanke foments inflation beacuse the oil companies he supports want extremely low interest rates and high gasoline prices so this way they can privatize American tax dollars for their own heinous crimes. No honour amongst thieves here, some are on the run and others squeeling like pigs. Solution, throw the Republicans overboard

Well, the hard thing is if you are a babyboomer. Is it a plot - I mean they are worried about the brain drain so now none of us can afford to retire - inflation means we have to keep working. So I follow their sagacious advice and put money away for my retirement only to watch the market quickly erode it and I don't really have the time to make it up - so I have to keep working!!! I am a 58 year old woman and this really sucks!! I have a pension and I am working on another one so I am luckier than most, but that money doesn't seem like it will be enough either! AAAARG!!

People have been broke, are broke now, and will always be broke.

There is no solution to solve the world's problems. That is why I focus on getting as much money as possible without regard to other people. They do not matter if I do not care. But the money I have will matter to everyone else.

This world is all about using fortune to get whatever you want. Once you get it, use it to satisfaction and discard it.

There are no morals or ethics. There is only getting ahead or falling behind. Staying still means that you are dead.

Hi, Yadgyu. It's good to hear from you again.

Maybe we should grab Yagdyu, split him open and read his entrails? Since there are no morals or ethic, such a thing could never be immoral or unethical.

(Who is that impostor in Iowa City?)

"If we’re in an recession, why should I put my money in a bank the way so many pundits, economists and assorted wisenheimers suggest? Shouldn’t I be stimulating the economy? Isn’t that my duty as a citizen?" I knowwwwww !!!