The economy

As we approach year-end, we have been busier than ever in the October-November period, discussing and setting up new plans. Our clients, mostly small businesses, appear to be 1) making money, and 2) comfortable with the idea of committing to high(er) contribution levels for the next several years.

We deal with a variety of professionals, such as physicians, dentists, and attorneys, who are typically insulated somewhat from economic swings. But we also work with a number of entrepreneurs in industries that may be hit harder by a recession (especially the last one) like construction companies, manufacturing, financial services, and similar sectors that are riding the waves.  It’s the latter group that is fueling growth right now; let’s hope the wave is growing and not cresting.  I’m not predicting one way or another, but for those who look for signs here and there, things are looking good from our corner of the world.

I have to add a caveat that I am always concerned about living on borrowed money, as the country has been doing since…well, the ’80s, albeit with surpluses in the ’90s.  My own silly predictions of the chickens coming home to roost (in the form of higher interest rates and inflation) have been laughably incorrect…but the play is not over yet.  I remain baffled as to how the government can suck up hundreds of billions of dollars in debt annually with no consequence…we shall see what the future brings as Social Security, Medicare and similar entitlement programs continue to spend more than they are taking in, and draw on their prior surpluses which were effectively “invested” in a promise by the government to pay that money back later.