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How To Enjoy Your Life After The Fed Ruins The World

Enjoy your life, no matter the economic situation. If you do, then you’ll always be winning. The key is to recognize reality and take appropriate action.

If the Fed raises the Fed Funds rate to 5% and keeps it there while inflation and the stock market plummet, the world will be temporarily ruined. As the global recession deepens, millions will lose their jobs, banks will go bust, and trillions of wealth will evaporate.

All the good done by governments to support billions of people during the pandemic will have been for nothing. Can you imagine struggling through a pandemic for three years, finally coming up for air only to be run over by a speedboat driven by a rich central banker?

When you are worth ~$100 million, as Fed Chair Jerome Powell most certainly is, you may not care as much about the middle class as you do about your legacy. Instead, you want the history books to emphasize how you were tough on inflation and gloss over the human suffering caused by your decisions.

Federal Funds target rate 2022

The Fed Is Turning Into The Enemy

What Jerome Powell, Neel Kashkari, and other central bankers fail to realize is they are quickly turning into public enemy #1. You can’t say things like, “We are seeing almost no evidence that underlying inflation is coming down,” when real-time evidence says otherwise.

In the beginning, the rich and mass affluent class will object to an overly aggressive Fed as they see their investments lose value. But nobody cares how the rich feel. The key is the middle class.

Mass layoffs always come after stocks collapse. The average person can stomach paying higher food prices. But they have a tougher time accepting being laid off while their central bankers are still gainfully employed and worth eight and nine figures.

Smart employees will get ahead of the curve and try to negotiate a severance before mass layoffs begin. After all, the first people to get laid off tend to have the best severance packages. Further, the sooner you get a severance, the sooner you can get in line to do something new.

Toying With Us

Let’s imagine Fed governors are sipping cognac and eating caviar on a balcony at Jerome’s mega-mansion. After all, they sold before the bear market began.

They’re having a merry good time while looking down upon us peasants. Jerome nudges Lael who nudges Michael who nudges Neel to play “Hoops.”

Jerome says, “Whoever can throw an hors d’oeuvre into one of the beggars’ bowls below gets a point! Everybody else has to take a shot of XO. First to five points wins!” Everybody cackles and cheers with glee.

Please don’t depend on politicians or central bankers to help you. They spent and cut way too much in 2020 and 2021, and now they are going to constrict and hike way too much now. To enjoy your life, you must look out for yourself!

Global shipping rates collapsing - Enjoy life in a fed-induced recession

How To Enjoy Your Life During A Global Recession

I used to think the Fed would pivot before getting to 5% on the Fed Funds rate. At the very least, the Fed would acknowledge the signs of moderating inflation by year-end 2022. The signs are obvious, especially after the latest Series I Bond rate offer declined by 2.7%. But maybe the Fed is determined to tank the economy.

Therefore, it’s worth thinking about what you would do in extreme situations so you can be better prepared. On the off chance an unfortunate situation occurs, you won’t be surprised.

This is typical premortem planning. You write out the three things to do in case of a car accident so that if you do get into one, you know what to do. The shock doesn’t completely override your brain.

The main thing you must decide during a global recession is whether to work harder or enjoy life more. You might want to work harder to increase your chances of keeping your job. Or you might want to coast because the return on your effort is no longer there. I believe the latter is the wiser move.

Here are my thoughts on how to enjoy life more in a situation of imprudent monetary policy according to the U.N.

1) Quiet Quit Harder If You Can

Although a global recession sounds scary, usually only the bottom 10 percent of performers are let go. But the media will amplify the doom and gloom stories of those being laid off. As a result, you may feel more at risk than you actually are.

In October 2009, the unemployment rate peaked at about 10 percent. It has since steadily fallen to about 3.5 percent today. Worst case, the unemployment rate could surge back to 10 percent by 2024.

historical unemployment rate and employment-population ratio - How To Enjoy Your Life After The Fed Ruins The World

You don’t have to outrun a bear. You just need to outrun the slowest person in the crowd.

Hence, do enough at work to be in the middle 40 – 60 percent of performers. If you want to really take a gamble, you can try to be in the 11 – 20 percent of performers. But I don’t recommend it.

During a global recession your return on effort is low. Therefore, the logical move is to work less since performance isn’t rewarded. You could bust your ass working 60 hours a week only to get paid less. During a Fed-induced crisis, your company’s share price is likely to lose value.

Quiet quit harder. Ask to work from home more. Take longer lunch breaks. Leave earlier to pick up your kids from school. Refuse to travel when Zoom meetings will suffice.

The name of the game is to focus on more important or fun things while you wait out the recession. If you really want to do something new, try and negotiate a severance and explore the world.

The opportunity cost of not working during a recession is much lower. Conversely, when the economy is going gangbusters, you want to try and capture as much financial upside as possible.

How I plan to enjoy life more if the recession gets worse:

Given I don’t have a day job, I can’t get fired from one. But I can do things to simplify life.

The first thing I will do is cut my posting frequency down from three to two a week. Then I will reduce my weekly newsletter to once every two weeks. I’ll probably drop my podcasting to once a month.

The frequencies should still be enough to keep readers, listeners, and myself engaged. But it will help reduce self-imposed pressure as I return to re-retirement. I told myself I would publish three times a week for 10 years starting in July 2009. So I already achieved my goal long ago. Online revenue is just a nice bonus.

Another thing I might do is shut off the comments section completely for a while. Even though it’s always interesting to read different perspectives, there is a ton of spam I have to wade through every day. Then there are the occasional hateful comments or irrelevant comments. Shutting down comments saves time and reduces stress.

Finally, what helped get me through the first two years of the pandemic was writing Buy This, Not That. Having a big goal to accomplish was a defiant way of not letting a terrible situation defeat me. Hence, if bad times are here for another 12-18 months, I could write another book to keep me busy.

You don’t get rich writing a book. But you do stay occupied and have a triumphant reward once it’s published. Financial Samurai was born out of the global financial crisis. It’s always nice to make lemonade during difficult times. Heck, I may even get into the best shape of my life!

2) Spend More Time With Family

For those with children, one of the best things to have come out of the pandemic was the ability to spend more time at home with your children. Plenty of adult children moved back in with their parents as well.

From all the feedback I’ve gotten since 2020, nobody has told me they regret spending more time with their parents, siblings, or kids. Instead, the regrets come from those who didn’t take advantage of the situation to relocate closer to parents or adult children.

Even though 2020 and 2021 were difficult times, I will always appreciate our family’s local outings. We went on so many great nature walks. Homeschooling accelerated learning and provided for better accommodations. I also learned to be a better parent.

Once you have a basic amount of financial security, money, career, and status are unimportant when compared to family.

Declining home prices due to rising mortgage rates

How I plan to enjoy life more if the recession gets worse:

If I reduce my Financial Samurai work from 20 hours a week to 10-15 hours a week, I will dedicate 70% of the free time to my kids.

My daughter turns three in December 2022, which means it’ll be go time for me to be more present. Three is when memories really begin to stick. It was also the age my son consistently began to warm up to me.

It’s easy to put everything you’ve got into your first child and slowly not spend as much time with every subsequent child. I’m sure I haven’t spent as much time with my daughter as I did my son at the same age. Therefore, I plan to course correct.

My biggest goals are to teach my kids how to ride a bike, scooter, and swim. At six years old, I remember the moment when I realized I was riding my bike on my own without anybody pushing me. Magical! I can’t wait for my kids to experience the same thing.

A deepening global recession will help improve our family relationships because it will reduce the temptation to spend time making money. The problem with money is there is an endless amount of money to make. It’s often hard to quit even if you have enough.

3) Make Better Friends Or Find New Love

If you find new love, the sting of losing so much money in a global recession will fade away. Remember the feeling of meeting someone you like for the first time? So wonderful!

If you’ve already found the love of your life, work on improving existing or new friendships. If misery loves company, then building better relationships during a financial crisis should be easier.

Declining used car prices

How I plan to enjoy life more if the recession gets worse:

Given I already have my wife, I’m good to go on the life partner front. However, it would be nice to have another close friend or two.

I tried softball, but the demographic was a little off (most were much younger than me). Tennis is the easiest avenue since I play for a couple of league teams. I’m going to arrange more doubles matches and drinks afterward opportunities.

The next way to find adult friends is through fellow parents at my son’s school. The trick is giving my son time to find consistent friends and then arranging playdates with their parents. Hopefully, we parents will get along. But it won’t always be the case.

Ideally, our families get along so well that we go on family vacations together. Finding such relationships takes effort, which is why we’re committed to going to every school-related event.

4) Travel More To Enjoy Life

A good thing about a global recession is declining flight and hotel prices. With the pandemic winding down, there’s no time like now to travel everywhere. If you are earning U.S. dollars, it is at its strongest level in decades, making international travel even more affordable.

Given it’s tough to make money at work or with your business, you might as well take all your vacation days to see the world. Go see the ancient temples in Angkor Wat, Cambodia. Visit the pyramids in Egypt. Travel to Paris for the French Open. You won’t regret it!

When you travel internationally, time seems to stand still. All the stress and responsibility back home seems to melt away. Back before we had kids, I dreamt of being a travel blogger. It was one of my favorite ways to enjoy life.

U.S. dollar strength a major factor in 2022 asset returns

How I plan to enjoy life more if the recession gets worse:

For the summer vacation of 2023, we may travel to Taiwan. Taiwan, like many other Asian countries, has finally dropped its quarantine policy for international travelers. No more do we have to isolate in a hotel room for one-to-two weeks.

Taiwan is an affordable country with friendly people and fantastic food. I think it would be a great experience for our kids to learn more Mandarin. I grew up there from first to fourth grade and have fond memories.

The great thing about traveling in June 2023 is that my kids should be old enough to remember. They will be six and three and a half. What a shame to travel to a faraway place only to not remember. The best time to travel abroad with kids is after they turn five.

I also have this grand plan of living in various cities for years at a time until our kids hit high school. I grew up in Manila, Lusaka, Kobe, Taipei, and Kuala Lumpur until the eighth grade and loved the experiences. But it was gut-wrenching to leave my friends behind in middle school.

Hence, we would probably stay in one place from seventh grade until high school graduation. We have the ability to live anywhere. The question is whether we will have the motivation to live exciting lives.

Here’s a picture of reader Steve with best-seller Buy This, Not That (Amazon) at Lake Atitlán in Guatemala. His career enables him to live abroad and help countries develop. What a fantastic combo!

Reading more great books during a global recession is one of my absolute favorite activities.

Buy This, Not That at Lake Atitlan in Gautemala

Thank The Fed For Gaining Back Your Life

Without going through the global financial crisis, I wouldn’t have started Financial Samurai. I would probably still be working at my boring job with a lot more stress and health problems today. If that was the case, I’m sure I would be constantly wondering whether there was more to life.

But instead, the global financial crisis pushed me to change. It spurred me to finally propose to my girlfriend, start this site, and figure a way out through a severance negotiation. Despite having less money, I was happier due to having more freedom.

So let’s look forward to a Fed-induced economic meltdown! It will finally spur us to do things we’ve been putting off for too long. Because once the water of money recedes, you’re left focusing on what’s most important.

How Do You Plan To Enjoy Life More?

Readers, how do you plan to enjoy life more after the Fed ruins the world? All ideas welcome! Does a global financial recession reduce your temptation to make money? Or are you working harder to try and not lose as much money?

To gain an unfair competitive advantage in building wealth, read Buy This, Not That. It was written exactly for volatile times like these. I synthesize my 27+ years of investing experience to help you make better financial and life decisions.

Buy This, Not That: How To Spend Your Way To Wealth And Freedom Bestseller

For more nuanced personal finance content, join 50,000+ others and sign up for the free Financial Samurai newsletter. I recap the week’s most important events and share my thoughts to help you build more wealth and confidence. Financial Samurai is one of the largest independently-owned personal finance sites that started in 2009.

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How To Enjoy Your Life After The Fed Ruins The World is written by Financial Samurai for www.financialsamurai.com

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IRS Out For Blood More Than Doubling Penalty Interest

IRS taxes increase

In a blatant act of financial tyranny, the IRS is intensifying its assault on hardworking Americans by shamelessly jacking up the interest penalty on underpaid taxes from a pitiful 3% to an exorbitant 8%. This calculated move, recalibrated quarterly, serves as a stark reminder of the insatiable appetite of the IRS, an oppressive behemoth relentlessly extracting every last penny from citizens already shackled by burdensome taxation.

Specifically targeting non-corporate taxpayers, the IRS demands the federal short-term rate plus an additional three percentage points, a blatant money grab that directly targets struggling self-employed individuals, independent contractors, and gig economy workers. These individuals, already grappling to make ends meet, find themselves in the crosshairs of a government voraciously hungry for more of their hard-earned wages.

For those daring to resist this blatant financial coercion and falling short on their payments, brace for the punitive underpayment penalty. There’s a meager concession – if the amount due is under $1,000 after begrudgingly considering credits and other tax factors, citizens might receive a temporary reprieve from the claws of the taxman.

This audacious maneuver puts the self-employed and independent contractors in the IRS’s oppressive grip, coercing them to make quarterly estimated tax payments under the looming threat of severe financial retribution. The January 16, 2024 deadline for the fourth quarter of 2023 is fast approaching – a date that casts a dark shadow over those grappling with the suffocating weight of government overreach.

While the regular W-2 employees might momentarily sigh with relief as taxes are conveniently siphoned from each paycheck, tax experts issue a stern warning against such complacency. Joseph Doerrer, a CPA and financial planner from New Jersey, challenges individuals to scrutinize their tax situation, posing the provocative question, “Are you where you should be?” A question that echoes as a stark reminder of the government’s overreach into the pockets of hardworking Americans.

One taxpayer, Sameet Durg, found himself blindsided by an underpayment penalty reaching into the thousands – an unwelcome surprise that serves as a chilling testament to the relentless demands of the IRS. Durg, a marketing executive, now watches his finances with unwavering vigilance, refusing to endure a hefty hit come April.

As the IRS unabashedly cranks up the interest penalty, taxpayers are left grappling with the heavy-handed tactics of an agency that seems insatiable in its quest to confiscate more of their hard-earned money. This move underscores the urgent need for citizens to vehemently resist the oppressive tax regime, actively defy the IRS’s overreach, and reclaim sovereignty over their wages.

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GUILTY! Sam Bankman-Fried Faces Over 100 Years in Prison

GUILTY! Sam Bankman-Fried Faces Over 100 Years in Prison

(ConcernedPatriot.com) – Sam Bankman-Fried has been found guilty of all charges related to the collapse of his Bitcoin exchange, FTX.

“A New York jury in Manhattan federal court agreed with prosecutors that Bankman-Fried defrauded investors, customers and lenders in connection with the collapse of his crypto empire,” reported Fox Business.

“Prosecutors accused Bankman-Fried, who founded and controlled both FTX and sister hedge fund Alameda research, of misappropriating and embezzling billions of dollars in FTX customer deposits, scheming to mislead investors, and instructing other executives at his businesses to do the same,” it added.

Bankman-Fried was charged with five charges of conspiracy and two counts of wire fraud in the first two criminal trials.

The maximum sentence for each crime was 110 years in prison.

The hearing for Bankman-Fried’s sentence has been scheduled for March 28.

The Southern District of New York’s U.S. attorney, Damian Williams, commended the decision and said that Bankman-Fried “perpetrated one of the biggest financial frauds in American history.”

“The cryptocurrency industry might be new, the players like Bankman-Fried might be new,” Williams said. “But this kind of fraud, this kind of corruption, is as old as time.”

NBC News gave some background information and historical context before the decision:

“FTX and Alameda quickly collapsed in November 2022 after some of their financial liabilities were exposed.

The fact that Alameda had taken billions of dollars from FTX’s customers and that much of Alameda’s balance sheet was comprised of digital currency assets it had created was central to the case against Bankman-Fried.

Unnerved by disclosures about the firm’s financial position, many of FTX’s customers tried to get their money back. That set off the equivalent of a bank run.

The value of Alameda’s investments crashed, and FTX couldn’t return much of that money because it had been given to Alameda. Some went to the fund’s lenders, and billions were spent on sponsorships, commercials, and loans to top executives. That, too, was a major part of the case against Bankman-Fried.”

Following the collapse, more FTX and Alameda executives were prosecuted, including former CEO of Alameda Caroline Ellison, co-founder of FTX Gary Wang, and chief technology officer of FTX Nishad Singh.

All three pleaded guilty, agreed to cooperate, and testified against Bankman-Fried.

In exchange for their cooperation, they will receive less severe punishments.

In his defense, Bankman-Fried stated that he never intended to deceive anyone and that, following the failure of FTX and Alameda, the government had been searching for someone to blame.

“Mr. Bankman Fried maintains his innocence and will continue to vigorously fight the charges against him,” Mark S. Cohen, counsel to Bankman-Fried, said in response to the verdict.

Williams stated that he hoped the conviction would be an example for others.

“It’s a warning, this case, to every single fraudster out there who thinks that they’re untouchable, or that their crimes are too complex for us to catch, or that they’re too powerful for us to prosecute, or that they could try to talk their way out of it when they get caught,” Williams said. “Those folks should think again.”

Copyright 2023. ConcernedPatriot.com

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Brutal ‘Bidenflation’ Has 1 in 6 Retirees UNRETIRING

Brutal 'Bidenflation' Has 1 in 6 Retirees UNRETIRING

(ConcernedPatriot.com) – According to an analyst, “Bidenflation” may be a long-term issue, leading one out of every six pensioners to contemplate retiring early.

It will undoubtedly persist if Biden wins re-election.

In the far-left USA Today, Patrice Onawunka laments the possibility that the “financial insecurity” brought on by inflation—which was brought on by “reckless federal spending”—will last forever.

More:

“People have connected the dots between ill-advised government policies and harsh economic outcomes. Spending nearly $2 trillion on government transfers to almost every household during supply-chain disruptions and exacerbated labor shortages caused inflation to accelerate. Putin’s invasion of Ukraine and other production disruptions worsened it.

The Biden administration and congressional Democrats passed a climate change bill that they falsely labeled the Inflation Reduction Act in hopes of fooling Americans, especially seniors.

The bill never addressed rising food, housing, or energy prices — households’ most basic and critical needs. Any climate savings would take years to come to fruition and could be offset by new costs for families — tens of thousands of dollars — on new electric vehicles.

Meanwhile, the green subsidies cost more than three times what the law’s supporters claimed.”

What could be crueler than adopting a law that does the exact opposite and is titled the Inflation Reduction Act?

55 percent of those who have already had to un-retire claim it was because they needed more money.

The White House and corporate media continue to lie to us by promising that the inflation issue will pass quickly, yet nothing ever appears to change.

Everything’s cost is skyrocketing especially housing. Meanwhile, Joe Biden is exerting every effort to keep inflation high. The federal government spends like a drunken sailor, which cheapens money.

Even worse, Biden has permitted countless millions of illegal immigrants to enter our nation, which raises the price of housing by increasing demand for limited items like housing.

Housing is a necessity, Onwuka tells us, unlike other discretionary expenses. Rent costs in America are rising, disproportionately affecting older folks and those with low incomes, especially those on fixed budgets.

In addition, she states that “10 million households headed by people aged 65 or older spend more than a third of their income on housing, and half of these pay more than 50%.”

See what happens when you factor millions of illegal immigrants into the housing problem.

Biden punishes Americans who have lived by the book, paid their taxes, saved money, and worked hard. He is putting the interests of millions of illegal aliens—who raise demand for everything and drive up prices for everything—above the interests of those Americans.

“In a little over four years, I intend to retire. I’ll never be wealthy, but since I started my first 401K in 1994, I’ve been setting money aside for that moment. I enjoy both my job and my coworkers.”

That isn’t the problem. The dream is the problem… the desire to live out your third act with the freedom and resources to do whatever you want.

Similar actions are taken by many working Americans who save money and forgo immediate enjoyment to prepare for their elderly years. As a result, I find it difficult to understand what it must be like to enter a dream before having it destroyed.

The anguish of coming out of retirement, returning to the grind, and facing Monday mornings all over again escapes me.

The only idiots, child abusers, and masochists vote Democrat.

Copyright 2023, ConcernedPatriot.com

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