While the S&P downgrade of America is a direct indictment of Congress's behavior by using the debt-ceiling as a pawn in a dangerous game, the fact remains that this punishment for not taking the debt-ceiling seriously is punishing the many and will profit the few.
I was recently asked to write an article about whether it is better to invest in the market or pay off the mortgage. My answer was: Invest in yourself. Unless you know where the financial wizards from Wall Street are parking their personal stash, venturing to guess what will do well in the upcoming months is a crap shoot. You might as well take your chances at a Casino in Las Vegas and enjoy yourself.
How can you, the average human being, make a profit from this man-made financial crisis by investing your hard-earned cash in the stock market? The Dow-Jones has lost over a trillion dollars since the S&P downgraded the United States' AAA rating to AA. All this money lost is affecting the 401K's of hard-working Americans.
Make no mistake, the top 2% of the population is not suffering. We are.
The stock market is taking a dip, the middle class is taking an economic bath and the wealthiest top 2% will be showered in cash. Those are, and will be, the realities of this self-created economic crisis.
If you listen to the pundits, you will come out more confused than ever, they don't have any answers for you about specific stocks you can buy blindly or think of them as a "sure thing."
If I had money to invest, I'd keep an eye on the companies the Federal government is going to contract with to invest in infrastructure and on the suppliers of materials to these companies. Maybe investing in our country and ourselves first is a better idea than listening to the financial "experts." on the tee vee machine.
Interest rates are still low and I would seriously consider refinancing the home to lower rates. This saves you thousands of dollars and allows you to own your home in full a lot sooner.
A friend of mine never understood her father purchasing small homes and renting them, she is very happy now that, as his sole heir, there is a steady stream of income that is unlikely to go away any time soon - It finally dawn on her that her dad was right - people need a place to live; if they have money and they are skittish about investing it, they are going to rent. If they don't have the financial resources or credit to afford a place of their own, they are going to rent.
Find ways to invest in yourself with the things you can control, such as lowering the interest rate in your home or paying off high-interest credit cards. Saving thousands of dollars on interest benefits you - isn't about time something benefited you?
Take control of your own finances and you will do better for yourself than Wall Street is doing with your 401K.
Image: Idea go / FreeDigitalPhotos.net