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What Turns Your Dial?

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Fear Dial


Fear Starts Out Simple

The emotion of fear is a gradient scale that starts at simple, garden variety “worry”, at the lowest level and goes up to a high level of terror.  At the highest levels of fear the body will literally shut down.   The emotion of fear is built-in to the body from a long time back as a survival mechanism (the fight-or-flight response).  If you have a mental fear the body will respond.  Any real or imagined threat to survival can produce this response.  However, possibly having less money (which is a survival point in the current society) is not likely to cause death.  But many people will get a mental and physical reaction to being laid off, fired or receiving less money that is not much different than if life itself was about to end.

If there was ever a question about stock market prices ever being based on anything other than greed and fear that question had to have been answered in the past two days.  Oh-my-god-congress-didn’t-pass-the-bailout-bill-sell-everything.  Good-news-it-looks-like-they-will-work-it-out-my-stock-is-valuable-again.

Good grief.

This isn’t the end.  The four horseman are not mounted and riding – I make that statement fully realizing that folks wearing suits who are on TV or work for the Federal Government are saying this is the worst possible situation.  Blah, blah, blah.  In case you missed it over at Bloodhoundblog, see this for a good laugh.

This is only about money.  Money that was spent by people who didn’t earn it and who didn’t have it.  One of the primary laws of finance is that income must be greater than outgo.  Sounds simple.  So simple it is routinely ignored:  by individuals, companies and governments.  The United States is the richest, most powerful nation on the face of the earth.  More so than any nation has ever been in all of recorded history – even Rome, when all roads lead there.  And yet, our country – with all of it’s riches and all of it’s resources has been spending more than it has been earning.  The current “meltdown” is just the house of cards that was there all along, falling down.  You can’t lose what you didn’t have.  We haven’t “lost something” so much as we discovered we didn’t have something.  To paraphrase Winston Churchill’s statement on democracy, the bailout is the worst possible solution, except for all the others.

No Bailout Means a Depression?

Some say if we don’t do the bailout we could have a depression.  Not a recession, a depression.  Truth is we could have a giant recession or even a depression if we do the bailout.  And I’m writing this to make you feel better.  It is just money.  That’s all, money.  No matter what happens, it isn’t the end of life as we know it.  You want to survive.  Me too.  A simple way to accurately predict how a person will behave or fare in the future is to look at their past pattern.  How did they do before?  How do they tend to handle things?  Do they tend to screw things up no matter what?  Or do they tend to land on their feet – always finding some way to make things go right?  That is always the ultimate test of any being: The ability to MAKE things go right.  Not “are things right?  The ability to make them right.  Don’t you usually do just that?  So what makes this all that different?  The suits from the government and TV yip yapping about this mess like they know what they are talking about?  If they knew what they are talking about we wouldn’t have this mess.

Survival of Man

No no.  It isn’t that I have faith in the people “fixing” this – it is that I have real faith and confidence in man’s survival drive – your survival drive.   Something really bad?  September 11th, 2001, New York City.  Yet, here we are.  If you insist on having something awful to worry about at least have the good sense to move it off of the subject of money.  Money does not equal life.  Worry about (I’m not really wanting you to do this!) World War III.  This small little planet is composed of an anarchy of nations armed with nuclear warheads.  Potential mid-east conflicts alone could bring about the end of life as we know it.  If you must concentrate on “something awful” – use that one.  But let me suggest, if you have managed to make it through the past few weeks without losing sleep over that one – skip the bailout, as well.

The question, what turns your dial isn’t nearly as important as who.  Who turns your dial?  And hopefully, the answer to that question – at least most of the time – is you.

Russell has been an Associate Broker with John Hall & Associates since 1978 and ranks in the top 1% of all agents in the U.S. Most recently The Wall Street Journal recognized the Top 200 Agents in America, awarding Russell # 25 for number of units sold. Russell has been featured in many books such as, "The Billion Dollar Agent" by Steve Kantor and "The Millionaire Real Estate Agent" by Gary Keller and has often been a featured speaker for national conventions and routinely speaks at various state and local association conventions. Visit him also at nohasslelisting.com and number1homeagent.com.

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7 Comments

7 Comments

  1. Bob

    October 1, 2008 at 8:30 am

    Well done Russell.

  2. Paula Henry

    October 1, 2008 at 8:51 am

    Russell – What happens around us is not near as important as how we react to it. When it comes to money,though, it changes people; for better or worse.

  3. Tina McAllister

    October 1, 2008 at 9:52 am

    wow, how timely! I just posted this morning on my blog about how the current economy does not scare me…and how I won’t accept the fear that seems to be infecting people like a plague. Great post!!

  4. James Bridges

    October 1, 2008 at 10:03 am

    Russell,

    Wonderful points to share. Our coach is fond of saying “control your fear”. Letting fear take over can certainly ruin confidence and affect your business, so we must be bold and control our fears. 🙂

  5. Teresa Boardman

    October 1, 2008 at 3:45 pm

    I have been thinking a lot about the economy and the current state of affairs. I have some strong opinions on how we got into this mess and how we should get out. The idea of the bail out frightens me.

    As for me I am a survivor and never worry about the future becasue I always figure out what to do and I go out and do it. My survival instinct is strong and always has been. I know I can support myself and any members of my family that get laid off. I have done it before and I can do it again.

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Economic News

Boomers retirement may be the true reason behind the labor shortage

(ECONOMY) Millennials and Gen Z were quick to be blamed for the labor shortage, citing lazy work ethic- the cause could actually be Boomers retirement.

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Older man pictured in cafe with laptop nearby representing boomers retirement discrimination.

In July, we reported on the Great Resignation. With record numbers of resignations, there’s a huge labor shortage in the United States. Although there were many speculations about the reasons why, from “lazy” millennials to the number of deaths from Covid. Just recently, CNN reported that in November another 3.6 million Americans left the labor force. It’s been suggested that the younger generations don’t want to work but retiring Boomers might be the bigger culprit.

Why Boomers are leaving the labor force

CNN Business reports that 90% of the Americans who left the workplace were over 55 years old. It’s now being suggested that many of the people who have left the labor force since the beginning of the pandemic were older Americans, not Millennials or Gen Z, as we originally thought. Here are the reasons why:

  • Boomers are more concerned about catching COVID-19 than their younger counterparts, so they aren’t returning to work. Boomers are less willing to risk their health.
  • The robust real estate market has benefitted Boomers, who have more equity in their homes. Boomers have more options on the table than just returning to work.
  • Employers aren’t creating or posting jobs that lure people out of retirement or those near retirement age.

As Boomers retire, how does this impact the overall labor economy?

According to CNN Business, there are signs that the labor shortage is abating. Employers are starting to see record number of applicants to most posted jobs. FedEx, for example, just got 111,000 applications in one week, the highest it has ever recorded. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects that the pandemic-induced increase in retirement is only temporary. People who retired due to the risk of the pandemic will return to work as new strategies emerge to reduce the risk to their health. With new varients popping up, we will have to keep an eye on how the trend ultimately plays out.

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Economic News

Is the real estate industry endorsing Carson’s nomination to HUD?

(BUSINESS NEWS) Ben Carson’s initial appointment to HUD was controversial given his lack of experience in housing, but what is the pulse now?

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NAR strongly backs Dr. Carson’s nomination

When President-Elect Donald Trump put forth Dr. Ben Carson’s name as the nominee for Secretary of Housing and Urban Development, NAR President William E. Brown said, “While we’ve made great strides in recent years, far more can be done to put the dream of homeownership in reach for more Americans.”

At the time of nomination, the National Association of Realtors (the largest trade organization in the nation) offered a positive tone regarding Dr. Carson and said the industry looks forward to working with him. But does that hold true today?

The confirmation hearings yesterday were far less controversial than one would expect, especially in light of how many initially reacted to his nomination. Given his lack of experience in housing, questions seemed to often center around protecting the LGBT community and veterans, both of which he pledged to support.

In fact, Dr. Carson said the Fair Housing Act is “one of the best pieces of legislation we’ve ever had in this country,” promising to issue a “world-class plan” for housing upon his confirmation…

>>>>>Click to continue reading…<<<<<

#CarsonHUD

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Economic News

Job openings hit 14-year high, signaling economic improvement

The volume of job openings is improving, but not across all industries. The overall economy is improving, but not evenly across all career paths.

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young executives

job openings

Job openings hit a high point

To understand the overall business climate, the U.S. Labor Department studies employment, today releasing data specific to job vacancies. According to the department’s Job Openings and Labor Turnover Survey (JOLT) for April, job openings rose to 5.38 million, the highest seen since December 2000, and a significant jump from March’s 5.11 million vacancies. Although a lagging indicator, it shows strength in the labor market.

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The Labor Department reports that the number of hires in April fell to 5 million, which indicates a weak point in the strong report, and although the volume remains near recent highs, this indicates a talent gap and highlights the number of people who have left the labor market and given up on looking for a job.

Good news, bad news, depending on your profession

That said, another recent Department report notes that employers added 221,000 jobs in April and 280,000 in May, but the additions are not evenly spread across industries. Construction jobs rose in April, but dipped in professional and business services, hospitality, trade, and transportation utilities. In other words, white collar jobs are down, blue collar jobs are up, which is good or bad news depending on your profession.

Additionally, the volume of people quitting their jobs was 2.7 million in April compared to the seven-year high of 2.8 million in March. Economists follow this number as a metric for gauging employee confidence in finding their next job.

What’s next

If you’re in the market for a job, there are an increasing number of openings, so your chance of getting hired is improving, but there is a caveat – not all industries are enjoying improvement.

If you’re hiring talent, you’ll still get endless resumes, but there appears to be a growing talent gap for non-labor jobs, so you’re not alone in struggling to find the right candidate.

Economists suspect the jobs market will continue to improve as a whole, but this data does not pertain to every industry.

#JobOpenings

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