The winds of change have swept across the United States and indeed the rest of the world. We are at an uncertain juncture in our history, what with Britain voting for a Brexit and United States electing Donald J. Trump as the next president. Dramatic change brings with it tremendous opportunities. Fortunately, the US economy is in an enviable position. Consider that the unemployment rate has dropped below 5% and is now at just 4.9%. The GDP growth rate in the US is at 2.9% and the inflation rate is hovering around 1.5%.
The Fed has pegged the interest rate at 0.50%, but a meeting of the FOMC on Wednesday, December 14, 2016 could see that rate rising to 0.75%. The greenback is holding its own during these uncertain times. The US dollar index is currently at 99.0780 (Friday, 11 November 2016) after rallying 0.30% or 0.2930 overnight. The dollar rally is significant in that it paints a picture of a resurgent US economy. Nonetheless, the euphoria that characterized equities markets on Wednesday, 9 November 2016 rapidly faded by Friday. The gains enjoyed on Wall Street were the strongest weekly performance of 2016.
It is not always easy to translate macroeconomic variables into profitable personal investments. However, there are ways to dabble in the markets that are less risky than others. It all begins with saving. That is at the core of capital consumption. Millennials are a key demographic in the US economy. They are the new frontier for the economy. Millennials are politically engaged and they espouse multiculturalism in all its forms. But on an economic front, they are the most vulnerable component of society.
With jobs in short supply, millennials are at the bottom of the food chain in the cutthroat economy. With entry-level work and starting salaries weighing heavily on their earnings prospects, millennials find it extremely difficult to save any money. Regardless of the exigencies and the pressures of living from paycheck to paycheck, the #1 priority for everyone is saving. There is no way to plan for the future if money is not being put away in the present. Emergencies occur and they require a strategic approach to financial management.
Maintain a budget at all times
- Budgeting is the most essential financial tool available to low income earners, middle income earners and high income earners. It explains to you in no uncertain terms how much you are spending and what your allocation for specific categories is. You need to know how much is coming in and how much is going out. If you’re continually in arrears, you will need to cut your expenses and/or take up additional part-time employment. It is impossible to maintain debt for any prolonged period of time; so therefore careful money management is key.
Learn to Say No
- Part of budgeting is knowing which expenses to cut out. If you are spending too much on entertainment (drinks, food, shows, vacations and the like), learn to say no. You will be surprised how much you can save by reducing your hedonistic purchases. It’s not necessary to buy the latest iPhone, iPad or MacBook Pro. In fact, in countries like Japan there is a movement to delay big-ticket purchases which is leading to deflationary pressures.
Learn to invest wisely
- It is difficult to save money if that money is easily accessible. There are many ways to dabble in the financial markets, not least of which is equities, certificates of deposit, Treasuries, commodities and the like. If you are a new to the investment arena, you may wish to practice your trading skills on a demo platform before you invest real money. One of the hottest new ways to dabble in the financial markets is online binary options trading. It is imperative that you select a reputable broker, read reviews and check for licensing and regulation.
Start planning for retirement today
- Millennials make the mistake of thinking that retirement is some faraway concept that doesn’t warrant serious consideration. Nothing could be further from the truth. The sooner you start planning for retirement by putting money away in investment accounts, interest-bearing fixed savings accounts, Treasury bonds or even cash, the better. Those years that you have ahead of you provide you with plenty of cushioning as you work towards your retirement.
These top tips will serve you well in your economic pursuits. The global trading arena is a dynamic place where threats and opportunities are whizzing by at a rate of knots. By learning to identify these opportunities, and avert the threats you will be better positioned for financial prosperity.