What does an economic collapse look like.
Do we see grocery stores closing? Do we see other retailers like clothing stores and department stores closing up shops?
Are there shuttered storefronts on your Main St. shopping center where you bought a tool from the hardware store or dropped off your dry cleaning or bought fruits and vegetables?
Do we see homes in neighborhoods becoming run down as the residents either were foreclosed upon or the owner lost his or her job so they can’t afford to cut the grass or paint the house?
Did the house next door where the Jones’ lived, now become a rental property, where new people come to live every few months?
Do you know one or two people who are looking for work? Maybe professionals, who you thought were safe in their jobs.
Did your high school buddy take a job at the local convenience store because he could not find work in sales?
Is the pothole on your street getting larger instead of getting repaired? Is there more than one street light out in your town?
Is the town pool closed much more this summer than usual?
Have you seen a situation — any situation — and said, “Jeez, it wouldn’t take much money to fix that.” But it’s hasn’t been fixed?
Well we have all witnessed many of these factors, but say to ourselves it can’t be an economic collapse because the stock market is at an all-time high.
Does that mean all is well? No, this is what a 21st century economic collapse looks like in the beginning.
The divide between the haves and the have-nots is growing exponentially. If the 99% can’t contribute to the economy, because of the dire financial situations they find themselves in, then you see GDP reports of 1% growth like we have seen lately.
Don’t be fooled into thinking that the stock market is any indication of the health of an economy in the 21st century.
It’s a rigged market to placate the masses — most of whom do not have much skin the game — that all is well, when in fact the alternative is true.
We are about to enter the problem months for the markets. September and October are historically times of greater market moves to the downside.
There was a time when this was very explainable. In the last two centuries huge amounts of cash would move from the eastern money markets over the mid-to late summer to the Midwest and western states to buy crops, leaving the equity and bond markets in a liquidity squeeze come late summer early fall.
Now it’s coming back from the Hamptons or the Cape and realizing that your trading book looks a little sick and that your bonus will depend on you making the right moves in the next three months, and you need to sell those dog stocks soon.
So what does an economic collapse look like in the 21st century? What is listed above is just the tip of the iceberg of what I’ve witnesses recently near my home, which is a typical middle-class suburban neighborhood. There are so many other examples and if you look through the prism of “Jeez, it wouldn’t take much money to fix that,” well now you begin to have an answer to why it’s not fixed.