The Lost Decade

It’s beginning to look as if the economic predictions of a lost decade might be accurate. Based on what happened to the Japanese economy in the 1990s, this model suggests that the Recession that started in 2007 was so severe that it will take up to ten years to recover from it fully. Consumer demand is still very low mostly because of two reasons. First, most people’s home and stock investments are depressed and it’s hard to spend money (which is necessary to revitalize the economy) when you are feeling poor. And second, with retirement around the corner, baby boomers who control much of the disposable wealth in this country, are retrenching. This I think is a fundamental shift in goals and expectations that will bode well for philately. How many television sets do you need? How often do you need a new car? Hobbies and pastimes that offer good return and are green will do very well. Buy a new 120″ plasma entertainment center (to replace the one you already have) and your $6000 tomorrow is worth zero. Buy a set of Zeppelin plate blocks for the same $6000 and you lose only 15% immediately and have a good chance of making a profit down the road. There are not many hobbies that offer a possibility of financial reward, the pleasure of the search, the intellectual satisfaction of learning, and the preservation of our planet. Yes, philately should do very well indeed.

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