Things are a changin! You know what it is like to do the same thing over and over again with the same information? It becomes easy almost routine. But then the world tosses you a curveball and things change, making those decisions are not as easy in this new environment! This is also true for Financial and Economic Experts. There have been a few strange things happening in the world of business and economics that are not as easy to explain based on past experience. The data they look at to make forecasts or predictions is turned upside down! Over the last 3 or 4 years, inflation has been VERY LOW, wages have gone up, unemployment is VERY LOW (50 year low), and economic growth has been great! This is NOT supposed to happen! These are not supposed to be in line. They are supposed to have an inverse relationship. One goes up the other goes down and vice versa. When growth and wages go up, inflation goes up! The economy, interest rates, the stock market and the whole world of finance has been on its heels because of this! I have attached a graph that shows the inflation rate over the last 100 years and you can plainly see this LOW inflation environment has NEVER happened before. Why is that? Well there are a ton of reasons and here are a few simple examples - 1) We are more productive with the way we live our lives. We don't have to spend 3 or 4 hours a week in a store buying “STUFF”. You can buy practically ANYTHING with a few clicks of a mouse and save a ton of time. I would even say money! Buying stuff on Amazon gets a bad rap but if I need pens for my office I just buy pens. If I have to go to WalMart to buy pens, you know I will walk out with 2 or 3 other items just out of impulse! So save money and TIME! Even though we live 1.1 miles from Walmart (6 minutes according to Google) it is still an hour trip. Walk around the store, look at the things I DON'T need, pick up and buy a few other things, check out and drive home. Wait I need or should I say WANT an unsweet tea from McDonalds. You get the picture! So this is ONE of a hundred examples I can give you that we have become more effective and efficient with our time and money! SO if I can “STEAL” 5 or 6 hours a week back from WASTED time and make them more productive time then that leads to MORE output! These are very hard things for Economist to measure and forecasters to predict how this will affect our economy! Now I always say it is MUCH more complicated than this and I could write 100 more pages about this but this is enough so I do not WASTE your time!
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