Since the end of the Great Recession in 2009, the U.S. economy has undergone a period of rapid growth, almost non-stop. Today, the recovery is still going strong, with U.S. jobs numbers showing signs of improvement on Wednesday morning. And while it might seem like new opportunities have magically appeared overnight, there’s often a dark side to these blessings as well as a darker cloud looming over the horizon. When the economy is in bad shape, it can mean that people are less able to make ends meet and more prone to poverty. This is particularly true for low-income Americans who typically lack access to reliable jobs or who struggle to save for their future. Fortunately, there are a number of ways you can take action when the economy is really struggling and help fight against unemployment and inflation through smart financial planning and other measures that work for you personally and professionally.
When the economy is really bad
The U.S. economy has been in freefall since the beginning of the Great Recession. As a result, many businesses have closed or been forced to shutter their doors. If you’re one of these small businesses, you may be able to save a portion of your income by taking advantage of the tax breaks and deductions that big corporations and the wealthy use to gain an advantage over their competitors. For instance, if you own a chain of coffee shops or sell online, you can lower your taxable income by taking advantage of the lower federal income tax rate on coffee sales. And if you operate a medical facility and specialize in heart disease or cancer care, you can claim a lower Medicare care reimbursement rate than if you conduct medical research at a loss.
If you want to avoid becoming a statistic, it’s critical that you set boundaries early. Start by saying no to everything that comes to mind when you think of the economy. No shopping, no skiing, no hiking, and so on. Limit your negative self-talk so that you don’t spend unnecessary time thinking negatively about others or yourself. “It’s not my problem, it’s yours,” you might say to yourself. Set boundaries so that you can focus on what’s working and what’s not working for your situation.