How has the credit crisis affected you?

By Reuters Staff
August 18, 2009

The demise of Lehman Brothers a year ago sparked a collapse in financial market confidence and set of a series of reactions that have spread hardship into the four corners of the globe.

Reuters News has charted the key events and their impact in “Times of Crisis” — a major new multimedia production on Reuters.com. (See it here.)

We’d like to add the experiences of Reuters readers. So, if you or your family have been affected by the events of the past year then use the comments section below to share your story.

Comments

One thing that seems to be entirely overlooked by all the complainers is that people have spent beyond their limits – credit is spending ‘future earnings’ and paying a hefty fee for the privilege. Yes, it is wrong that banks and credit card companies nickel and dime us (regulation needed!) but some of the responsibility lies with the consumer!!! Don’t spend what you have not earned yet. Housing prices were astronomical – they only had one way to go – down! All the people that complain now that their houses lost in value still were the ones who agreed to buy them for a set price, then probably were enjoying showing off their new home and now feel they are unfairly stuck with the bill. And yes, also here should be some government intervention – if fraud (or intentional price inflation) by a lender or appraiser can be proven than that company should be held responsible and lower the payments to what would have been fair to begin with – even that won’t happen since ‘de-regulation’ is hoped to be the cure-all).Long story short, DON’T SPEND WHAT YOU HAVEN’T ALREAD EARNED. Save for a rainy day. Vote for universal health care – we will get stuck with the tab either way but at least we’ll all have coverage and maybe the insurance and pharma companies take some of the losses instead. Stop bailing out companies – start giving start-up funds to small businesses, loan at fair rates to the people. We need to start producing because all this ‘servicing and managing’ has NOT paid off for most – only the few that skim off the top!

Posted by Mike Wallace | Report as abusive
 

I work for a consulting firm that was doing very well before the crisis. For the past couple of years, the company shrunk from almost 90 people to about 25 and survivors have to work with reduced salaries, increased hours, and now furlough (the new craze). Each of my last paychecks is close to what I would make in unemployment but I am working 50-60 hr weeks.We work for banks and financial institutions and we see that they are sitting on lots of money and all are waiting to make their move. The banks got bailed out, got the chance to cleanse themselves from bad loans, and the vultures are waiting to jump on more prey. I guess this is the new American way!

Posted by architect | Report as abusive
 

The credit crisis hasn’t affected me. I didn’t live beyond my means. I could have gotten a nice house and driven a BMW but I knew this was beyond my means and risk tolerance. For someone to say they want a cramdown or lower interest payment is insane. Just to get this straight people lived beyond there means and now want me and every tax payer in America to cover them. It’s repulsive. And to see the comments on here is even worse. People just want more credit. HELLO! That’s what got us into this mess. Try living within your means and saving.

Posted by Peter | Report as abusive
 

How has it effected me? Back in 2003 I pulled all my wife’s and my own 401k savings, when it was easy to do it. We took the tax hit because we saw what was coming and I figured we would make it back thanks to Fed policies if I invested it in gold. Yes I did make it back, and then some. $340 gold is now $950 gold. While I preached what was coming no one would listen. I was considered crazy by most. In 2007 most that called me crazy lost 40% or better of what they had. I recently lost my job due to the economy and downsizing but prior to that I purchased a vending cart, “just in case” we would need it. It now supplies a major part of our income while I look for another job in my chosen field, for less money. The world better be ready for round 2. It is not far behind. Your media reports are a bit better than most but you still are a cheerleader for the administration. You would be better off with a bit more truth presented to the readers and less fiction. “History doesn’t repeat……it rhymes” Mark Twain. Dare you to post……proud if you do.

Posted by M Novak Jr | Report as abusive
 

It is obvious the current economic crisis is caused by greed, overconsumption, and lack of saving…. but not by most average Americans!Everyone knows tons of small formerly profitable businesses are going under across this country, because they can’t compete with unregulated goliaths who are accustomed to getting everything for free from corrupt politicians and other “leaders”.What about the banks? If they had saved some of their profits as reserves, instead of lining their “darling employee’s” pockets, maybe we would have been able to avoid this credit crisis which has cost many Americans their jobs, including mine!!!!! Instead they get bailed out, and then greedily clutch the money they’re supposed to lend.You know that big box you frequent, because you’re trying to make ends meet because of the downturn? Many are forcing manufacturers to build their products overseas if they want contracts to sell their products in their stores. The land the big box stores sit on is often given to them through politicians eager to bring in “good paying jobs.” They often make “arrangements” to not have to pay much in taxes to the communities they plunder, while soiling our land with cheap, disposable, unrepairable products. They often DO make a big deal of the miniscule amount of their profits they contribute to charity, to draw your attention away from the fact they’re sucking the blood (money) out of the community, and shipping it to their “corporate headquarters” and a few CEOS!We have been brainwashed into believing that short term profitability will make us rich. Outsourcing, and reduced costs yield greater returns from our investments. We were led to believe this was good for us, and we believed it as we watched our 401Ks grow. Who has your money now??????Today, design, engineering, medical, computer programming, and even drafting services are being outsourced as readily as manufacturing jobs were in the past. Is there no end to the greed of American corporations? Should Corporations really be allowed to reap the benefits of this country’s tax payer provided protections and advantages if they refuse to employ Americans?As most everything is made in another country, even much of our food, and professional service jobs disappear, we are left wondering if there will be enough “green” “medical” and “education” jobs for everyone????????? Oh yes, you could also join the military and become a hero, defending the decisions of the corrupt politicians mentioned above. The only sarcasm in the last sentence was intended for the politicians and their devilish ways, not our soldiers!!!!!I am an experienced, licensed professional having a difficult time finding work. I didn’t overspend. I drive an old truck, and rent instead of owning a home.My former employer was a reputable firm for the last twenty plus years with 60 employees. They are now out of business.

Posted by pissed off | Report as abusive
 

I am an educated, experienced, licensed professional having a difficult time finding work. I didn’t overspend. I drive an old vehicle that is paid for, and rent instead of owning a home.My former employer was a reputable firm for the last twenty plus years with 60 employees. They are now out of business.It is obvious the current economic crisis is caused by greed, overconsumption, and lack of saving…. but not by most average Americans!Everyone knows thousands of small formerly profitable businesses are going under across this country, because they can’t compete with unregulated goliaths who are accustomed to getting everything for free from corrupt politicians and other “leaders”.What about the banks? If they had saved some of their profits as reserves, instead of lining their “darling employee’s” pockets, maybe we would have been able to avoid this credit crisis which has cost many Americans their jobs, including mine!!!!! Instead they get bailed out, and then greedily clutch the money they’re supposed to lend.You know that big box you frequent, because you’re trying to make ends meet because of the downturn? Many are forcing manufacturers to build their products overseas if they want contracts to sell their products in their stores. The land the big box stores sit on is often given to them through politicians eager to bring in “good paying jobs.” They often make “arrangements” to not have to pay much in taxes to the communities they plunder, while soiling our land with cheap, disposable, unrepairable products. They often DO make a big deal of the miniscule amount of their profits they contribute to charity, to draw your attention away from the fact they’re sucking the blood (money) out of the community, and shipping it to their “corporate headquarters” and a few CEOS!We have been brainwashed into believing that short term profitability will make us rich. Outsourcing, and reduced costs yield greater returns from our investments. We were led to believe this was good for us, and we believed it as we watched our 401Ks grow. Who has your money now??????Today, design, engineering, medical, computer programming, and even drafting services are being outsourced as readily as manufacturing jobs were in the past. Is there no end to the greed of American corporations? Should Corporations really be allowed to reap the benefits of this country’s tax payer provided protections and advantages if they refuse to employ Americans?As most everything is made in another country, even much of our food, and professional service jobs disappear, we are left wondering if there will be enough “green” “medical” and “education” jobs for everyone?????????

Posted by dr | Report as abusive
 

@DavePyet no one else even talks of the Federal Reserve here. They give macro experiences but never talk of the underling problem. It really is like people are asleep!Wow, and I used to laugh at that term, now I’m seeing it more and more.

Posted by Clayton | Report as abusive
 

“THE FEDERAL RESERVE! It’s a private offshore bank! They have you fooled that is is part of the Gov.”All Reserve Banks are and must be independent from Treasuries. The latter collects taxes and allocates it against budgets, hence a ‘shortage or surplus on budgets’ To cover a shortage, Treasuries have to borrow from somewhere. The former decides on monetary and fiscal policy, e.g. money supply and interest rates. As always, there will be Government interference. The same analogy applies to the Attorney General and Auditor General and the Judiciary.”One thing that seems to be entirely overlooked by all the complainers is that people have spent beyond their limits – credit is spending ‘future earnings’ and paying a hefty fee for the privilege.”Exactly ! We love to spend what other people have saved, i.e. what other investors deposit into banks, we spend on credit. The banks merely intermediate. The shorter the period to maturity, the higher the interest rate. The banks make an ‘interest turn’ on the rate at which they borrow from the Feds, and Fees. That covers their operational costs and free cash flows which props up our pension fund portfolios and their bonuses.Get used to it.

Posted by Casper | Report as abusive
 

I too had great credit before this recession, at least until I was laid off last year. I was always frugal with my money, never bought any luxuries, fancy cars or expensive things. I still have yet to find work, jobs are quite scarce these days. I collect no UI benefits nor receive government assistance of any kind, however I did move in with a friend to try and extend my personal savings as long as I could. Now my savings has nearly dried up, and its gotten to the point where I’m unsure where my next meal is coming from. Strange that I should now be here, never quite expected this to happen to me. Always did the right thing, always played fair. Its real tough out there now.. when I’m lucky enough to get a job interview I know there are a hundred or more applicants all competing for it, but I continue to try my best and keep my chin up. I ride the city bus now since I can’t afford to fix my clunker (didn’t qualify for cash for clunkers since I had to let my insurance lapse and no job). Last week I was lucky to get a job interview, but had to walk three miles for it since bus service in my city is spotty. Someone else got the job, but I remain hopeful that something will open up for me soon. Cheers!

Posted by Michael | Report as abusive
 

the shockwaves were felt on the other side of the world. I live and work in India, whilst we have been contributing the same numbers and growth y-o-y but seems due to the happenings in the West, our bonuses and salaries have been curtailed. I have not had a salary and bonus hike since two years. Dont repent it but yes, sometimes feel we have been made subject to this without any direct contribution to this catastrophe.On the flip side, we Indians eitherways enjoy a high savings rate, I save c. 50 pct of my salary, that saving ratio owing to the crisis has increased, now I save 60 pct. (with the exception of my wife :))But as good times dont last, bad times also dont last for long, I think what we are asking by curtailing credit is changing attitues and behavioural patterns, I am not sure how successful has the mankind been to change itself from habits it has inhibited i.e excess spending.

Posted by AmAg | Report as abusive
 

Since I was priced out of the housing market in 2005 I bought a small mobile home. Luckily what I pay for space rent is less than a comparable apartment. I am still paying off my car. But those are my only debts. My 401k has been halved, but since I am 34 I figure I have many years to make up the loss.I’m just gonna keep working paying off my house and car and saving what little I can.

Posted by nika | Report as abusive
 

I am from Mumbai and I trade in US interest rate instruments.I have seen the “subprime” buzz turn in to recession.Well to say the least I totally agree that it was the greed which caused this crisis.Its easy to blame the Investments Banks and traders alone.But why do we forget it was the masses who spent and indulged,were they not greedy when they bought multiple houses,spent needlessly on oil guzzling cars, went on shopping spree on credit?(& chose W to power twice !!).What were they thinking?Its allthemore easier to blame outsourcing, why don’t we consider the same when Companies pay peanuts to employees in Developing nations;Sell products in Developing markets at international prices and suck the money from the poor countries to grow richer? Everyone wants profits but at the others cost.You want your Investments/companies to grow from sales in Developing countries but would not like them to be employed even if they work for fraction of cost.Either you globalize in spirit or become a closed economy.Your 401 K’s should give you returns but they should not create opportunities for others.Thats just unfair and backward.World economic powers came together to solve this problem.New order will come forth, those who are smart enough will survive and thrive, rest can live in past fantasies.The question is will people continue to mollycoddle themselves,again?

Posted by Pranav | Report as abusive
 

Been in business 15 yrs., now I’m 50. I can’t cut anymore expenses. No one is spending here. No one wants to hire a 50 year old. I have no medical insurance, retirement age for S.S. has been pushed up two years.I am running a deficit, in the black, that has depleted most of my savings. I am trying to leave the state but no one want’s to buy my house. They say you should be able to go 1 year on your savings should anything happen. This has gone to far! We are in a depression however, the politician has special words and phrases for you.It is time take down a few notches some CEO’s and politicians, let them them see the bottom. Take away their health care, wealth and happiness.Do I want a red bulls-eye (Target)reminder when I look for bargains? Boycott WalMart and Target folks, don’t be suckered by super capitalism.

Posted by Boo Hoo | Report as abusive
 

…ahem, India, China, Brazil and Russia, in my opinion, are developed economies, even embedded, especially with unrecorded informal GDP’s. Take China – they glut the World markets with cheap (labour) products that require recalls.

Posted by Molly Coddle | Report as abusive
 

My fiance have been fortunate not to be affected in a negative way by the current crisis. We have both been smart spenders all our lives and good at saving. I think we benefit from the downturn because we have had the extra cash to spend and things are cheaper than before. So where we did not spend in the past on things that were once higher, we spend now and get good quality for less.I think it comes down to smart spending and knowing when to cut the bleeding before you are in too big of a hole. In my early 20′s I struggled to meet my bills, so I decided that there was no sense hurting myself by trying to attain things I could not afford. So instead of spending I saved money. That habit has helped me not only in my personal life but in my career as well.

 

Lehman Brothers have a number of UK sub-prime lenders in the housing market, One of which is SPML (southern pacific) run by a company called Capstone, who owe LehmanBrothers some 60million through inter-company loans/accounts, They have issued legal/repossession against most of there accounts in the sub-prime marketand are by far one of the worst company,s in this fieldThey have made the pages of recent publications includingThe House of Commons Treasury Committee on Mortgage arrears, also the FSA and the FOS have many cases against them, and there is a serious concern over the intolerable strain this company is putting on people lives.?

Posted by DEREK | Report as abusive
 

You’ve got to be kidding me? How have I been affected? My wife and I bought our home in August of 2006 at the height of the market. We are now under water in that we owe more than it’s worth. Also my 401k has been cut in half. The silver lining is that we didn’t buy an expensive house to begin with; the total amount we owe is roughly equivalent to our annual taxable income. So while we’re definitely affected, others are much worse off.

Posted by Richard | Report as abusive
 

Hello There , Seamus from Ireland here . I was struggling financially up to this year .I’ve found a new financial lease of life buying and selling bank shares of our ailing Irish banks . It is the best thing that ever happened me !Rock On !

Posted by Seamus | Report as abusive
 

To Pravnav from Mumbai – In answer to your question about what people were thinking – they thought that the credit available to them, and the markets that have persisted for decades, would continue. This was a reasonable assumption for a “normal person” especially given that experts at the Fed said things were fine.So instead, a huge number of people have been overwhelmed by the systemic risks these traders created, and the Fed ignored. So, for example, you can’t get the refinancing needed for your mortgage because even though the fed is lending out at 0.25%, banks are hording money just in case things get worse. And you can’t sell your house because even if you aren’t underwater, those same banks aren’t lending money to others.

Posted by pac | Report as abusive
 

To answer the question, we have aggressively tried to pay down or mortgage for the past 5 years, but we moved to a better job. We’re having trouble selling our property because even though we get interest, people are having problems putting financing together.

Posted by pac | Report as abusive
 

nothing, i don’t drive a car, i don’t have a house I’ve never had any real money so there is no change there.in 2000 you could really already see a bubble was being created in the housing market ‘unless you were blind’.and a house is NOT AN INVESTMENT, that’s the only important thing people should get trough their thick skulls.

Posted by markR | Report as abusive
 

Yankee Doodle had a car,Bought with US bank debt.He hit a bear and lost a wheel,And drove down an embankment.Spun the wheels and now he’s stuck,In bad sub prime molasses,Shame that Fred and Fann are sunk,They might have lent a hand.Along the road came Goldman Sachs,Who heard poor Yankee holler,”I might just help” wise Goldman said,”If you could lend a dollar”.He took his wand and waved it round,His biro made a clicking sound,”Just call your car a house” he said,”And then there’ll be no problem”So Yankee set out on the road,To get fed’ral assistance,But help from nearby BernankeWould take a bit o’ distance.On coming back, the sun beat downUpon poor Yankee’s beaten browAnd so he stopped along the way,To drink at Wall Street Bar.”Get out, you swine” The owner cried,”You have not learned your lesson”For Yankee’s tab was well and spent,And he was in recession.The moral of the tale was lost,And Yankee’s car, alas, the cost.He focused too much on his speed,And not where he was headed.

Posted by Haha | Report as abusive
 

For me: I lost almost every dollar of unused credit lines, knocking my credit score down by over a hundred points.

 

My fiance and I bought a $300K house in Feb 2008 with 1% down. She left me in Nov 2008 and I was left unable to make the $2400 /month mortgage payment. The house has dropped in value by $60K. After 6 months of going in circles, the bank (Citi) has completely dropped the ball. First, they denied my loan modification request, then they put a $30K promissory note on my short sale (to which I said no) and finally, they denied my request for a deed in lieu. These banks are mentally deficient and dysfunctional to say the least. So, off to foreclosure goes the house and I will fight these SOB’s and stay in the house until the bitter end (for spite). I don’t care anymore that I will have a foreclosure on my credit (so will millions of other Americans). I will most likely never want to be a homeowner again. Obama to the rescue? I don’t think so!

Posted by Bob | Report as abusive
 

Well, I was laid off, reckoned I had made enough to retire on, and am now doing a PhD. Let’s see where this leads me.

Posted by s | Report as abusive
 

I, as so many people in this country,am in a very difficult situatation. I am very surprised that there is no mention of the millions of us who have had to file chapter 13 to get out of debt. And as you know, after the 13 there is more problems trying to get back on our feet. The credit rating that we were so proud of, is now gone. There will be more hard times ahead for all of us.

Posted by Fernando Huerta | Report as abusive
 

THE super rich and corrupted systems will finally come crashing down in the next few years don’t take my word for it …check it out (p.s.there have been 10 other crashes in wall street history …wait till you see this one coming up…WOW!

Posted by bob 4 the poor | Report as abusive
 

In California, housing prices have been out of control for years and years. I’m suprised the bubble didn’t burst long ago. I didn’t buy a house cause I thought they were overpriced even 5 or 6 years ago. The main way the recession has been affecting me is that the interest rate on my 401k is really low. But that’s actually been going on for years. It started back when Greenspan kept lowering the prime rate over and over again till it was almost zero. In essence, that contributed to overpriced houses, people getting mortagages they couldn’t afford, and people who were saving money not earning good interest on it anymore.

Posted by charles | Report as abusive
 

WOW! Sounds like a lot of people are in quite a pickle.Well, I’m 17, turning 18 soon, and still have my job I got 3 years ago as a junior network technician. I was actually going to get a raise from minimum wage to $15/hr, but the whole “recession” thing happened, and I could either forfeit the raise or my job. After looking at some of the comments I guess it could’ve been worse.I’ve paid for most of my wants. My desktop, laptop, and cellphone were all paid for with my own money. But my necessities like food, water, electricity are provided by my parents.So, I guess I’m sheltered in that respect, and couldn’t possibly imagine what most of you are going through. I don’t understand what “sub-prime mortgages”, “401k”, and this “housing bubble” thing is, and have been terrified of “investments” and “credit”. What is this stuff? Is it like real money or something else? I guess I’ll learn later on.As you can see, they don’t teach us this stuff in school, actually, they don’t really teach us much at all. And my parents don’t want to talk about finances whenever I ask them about it.I honestly wonder, what’s going to happen in the future? At the rate universities are hiking up prices I think I’ll just go to the local community college. I qualify for a full scholarship…for now anyway.

Posted by Rob | Report as abusive
 

I have realised that I have to shut my mouth,listen, hold on to what I have, ride out the boredom and not make mistakes at work. I do however feel very sorry for the elderly whose income streams have reduced radically and who might become destitute.That’s sad and worrying.

Posted by Casper Lab | Report as abusive
 

the financial crisis has not affected me so much because of l have regularly income. maybe the reason why l live in Turkey. Banking system in turkey and turkish economy are very strong anymore…

Posted by cumali | Report as abusive
 

“and a house is NOT AN INVESTMENT, that’s the only important thing people should get trough their thick skulls.”This particular comment is a little disturbing. A house is definitely an investment, as over a long period of time 99% of them will increase in value.The problem was not necessarily with people investing in the real estate market. It was the refinancing into ARM’s and the Overbuying that caused this mess. I bought an overpriced condo in the beginning of 2005 and sold it at an even more absurdly high price 18 months later. All said and done i walked away with 40k. After paying off all my debt, i also bumped my credit score into the high 700′s. I then lived in an apartment for 3 years until i bought a much nicer house out of foreclosure in april. The old addage for making money in the stock market is to “buy low, sell high.” It was never to buy low, refinance high. Those of us who sold when others were refinancing are doing just fine, and we are the ones getting all the great deals on homes now.I feel bad for families that are losing their houses because of lost jobs or other economic maladies. I will not and cannot feel sorry for people who refinanced their homes to two or three times its value and now are losing them. The house i bought for 70K was foreclosed on with an outstanding loan balance of 300K, and the guy that refinanced it to that amount and then walked away did not have to give all that money back. He gets to keep his boat and his SUV and whatever else he paid cash for, and he loses a house he had no chance of ever paying off and takes a hit on his credit score. Like he will need credit anytime soon! He already owns everything he needs, and he’s probably renting a nice house on the cheap now. It’s the rest of us that foot the bill for him now, because we, the one’s who pay our bills on time and work hard to pay back what we owe, we are the one’s having our credit lines cut down to nothing, which drops our credit scores fast.I completely agree with loan modification, as i believe that everyone who refinanced all the ballooned value out of their house should be legally responsible to pay back every dime. Even if it is at a greatly reduced monthly payment, there should be NO OPTION to walk away and leave the mess for the rest of us to clean up.

 

The drying up of credit has impacted the telecoms industry which I work in. As a result, telecoms firms are less likely to spend on large systems implementations projects that my firm bids for. The result has been less available work, mass layoffs and desperate to keep to my job I took a role on one of the last projects available… in Saudi Arabia. I want my old life back!

Posted by Anon | Report as abusive
 

I\’ve been most fortunate.Last September I had an incling that the economy was going to get worse before it would get better. So, I transfered my savings from an equities fund to a government bond fund. The next day Leman Brothers went belly up.In April of this year I transfered the money back into the equities fund.These two decisions amount to value of about $200,000.As of last week I\’m out of equities again.Unless I do something imprudent in the next few years, my retirement will be a bit better because of market fluctuations resulting from the credit crisis.

Posted by Chuck | Report as abusive
 

I have become a professional blogger to kill time and also spill my guts to the whole Western world. It helps. No ways I will ever work in Saudi again. Consequently I spend some time with my shrink on Saturday mornings, to kill some more time and utilise health care benefits to it fullest extent before end December. Next week the whole family is going and then we all move over to specialised dental treatment for the remainder of 2009.Good luck Chuck !

Posted by Casper Lab | Report as abusive
 

I like the character analysis of the reader who explains how banks make money providing credit to people – by charging interest. Obviously that guy works for a bank. So do I. By the way, the banks have behaved in exactly the same way as the foolish people you describe. With one exception. Getting funds at 0% and lending at 5 plus generous state support that´s there to help, who would complain? I´m not happy about the way the business model works but I have loans too and I hate being ripped off. Not all of us have spent beyond our means, you know! In that scenario the bonuses are allways there – and that´s not a fair deal for those businesses without access to government funding. Those banks that fueled the crisis with their pathetic investments are laughing all the way because this way the debt generated will be wiped and fed loan paid off easily. Back to square one. No reason to change the model, right? Don´t be fooled that anything fundamental will change in the way banks operate. Yes it will be discussed for years but no one will dare to touch it. Sad but true. Just make sure you get out of this game before the next bubble bursts.

Posted by Franz Kafka | Report as abusive
 

i want to start by saying that all my thoughts and prayers go out to my fellow americans as well as the others around the world who are dealing with a scary present and future. eventhough i am facing a foreclosure and bankruptcy as a result of losing over half of my income, i wake up grateful every day. i am currently employed(although this could change tomorrow), have a roof over my head, food to eat, people i love and who love me back. i’m a 34 yr old single gal and would be lying if i said that i didn’t make any poor financial choices over the years- i was naive and thought my income would remain the same. when i lost my job i stupidly resorted to the large amounts of credit i had available. i have learned a hard lesson and am moving forward with a different mind-set. i spend money only on what i need now. i am young and should have time to recover with these new attitudes i have gained… my heart really goes out to those who are older and to the parents who have lost their jobs with children to support.

Posted by hope | Report as abusive
 

Dealing with the professional motorsports teams, I thought and felt secure. We built a solid reputation as a leader of high performance equipment. But when the sponsors started writing smaller checks. Things started going south and fast. Six digits to zero in three years. So this financial mess really started for my family and I in 2006 (about the same time Detroit started feeling beat-up).We went from living high on the hog to living in a motorhome. I went touring the country with my family for 7 months. Regrouped and will start over where the new doors of opportunity have opened.I try to view it as not bad, but different.Hell’ I was getting tired of the pool, yard and house maintenance anyway.Lessons for me: Never listen to the White House hype. Trust my gut. Listen to people like; David Walker, former Comptroller General and all the other guys whom not always paint a rosy picture.Take note of people getting on-board with their life jackets in hand.

 

The Credit Crisis has not affected me at all physically, however it has scared the crap out of me emotionally.

Posted by Mithan | Report as abusive
 

I have had a steady and successful career in the Entertainment Business as a Performer and Producer for 40 years up unitil the Depression. I have been making my living as a well regarded Pianist. I have never been out of work in twenty years except for travel time. Now my work is a financial extravagance. The last two years have been a nightmare. But I will prevail; from here on out it’s all time and patience. Time to rehearse and plan, and patience while the national ship rights itself.

Posted by A.J. Franks | Report as abusive
 

Having been very low on money and only marginally employed for the better part of my adult life, I am not affected, for I have learned not only to live without, but to prefer being without much of what is generally considered essential.I have no television set, for example, no wireless telephone (much less “cell” or “mobile” service), no GPS, and no “services,” e.g., “lawn care,” manicures, etc. I have no “retirement savings” whatsoever, so the market never had any of my pennies to multiply or to lose. I do not think the thief Bernard Madoff had “victims.” Those people crying over their losses now were trying to amass great personal wealth outside the rules—you had to be “let in” by BM (perfect initials for him) and he was known not to “accept” people just desperate to get in on his scheme. They did not want to know how their money might be doubled or trebled; they just wanted it done, sort of like people who want to eat meat but be spared the facts of butchering mammals and poultry.Frankly, I pity the people dependent on gadgets and prop-ups and curtains drawn over what it would dim their pleasure to know, and gullible in the face of advertisements that they need more more more when they have money, and then, when they are losing money, more more more advice on “how to do with less.”And I think that having lost their toys and indulgences, they are helpless. They cannot cook or launder and iron their own clothes or fix anything that breaks in their over-large houses. They cannot wash their cars. They cannot read a map. They cannot raise their own children, or even train their dogs, without hired help. They cannot rake their own leaves; they are lost unless a truck pulls up and six Mesicans jump out with what looks like diving gear strapped on.I think, with obvious exceptions, that the American poor are better off for knowing what they must know to survive, having to toil such that their bodies are strong, and for having the experience of fending for themselves. They know how to be cold, how to be sick, how to stretch food, etc.I just finished “Silas Marner,” a maligned novel that is truly a lovely book, which ends with the rejection of lordly wealth by a beautiful young woman from quite humble means. And she is not only firm in her decision, but positively joyful about it, and so is the reader, for her and the people that love her.

Posted by nbe | Report as abusive
 

I am most lucky to still be employed, as my husband has been out of work for 5 years after back surgery and a spine in terrible condition. He’s in constant pain, but luckily we both have insurance. My insurance for him as a dependent has been raised in price to over $1,000 per month, and I can’t handle the medical and other bills my myself any longer. I have started bankruptcy proceedings. I am lucky to have a home, car and family to love me and for me to love. We do everything we can to save money. We eat very frugally, and pay the bills before anything else. But you get to the point where you have given all you can, and there is no more. Our budget surprises people that we have been able to stay afloat this long.I really feel for others who have, through no fault of there own, lost their homes. When we purchased our home in 1987 it cost us only $33,000 but through job losses and illness, we’ve had to refinance a few times. We will try to hold on to our home regardless of all else. It isn’t fancy, needs work, but it’s a roof over our heads, and a haven.Something must be done about medical costs in this country. If not for all I am paying for medical, I would be able to keep things afloat, but we can’t be without it – not with him in his condition and me with a heart condition. We are stuck paying these premiums as long as we are able. I only hope Congress remembers the people who they are supposed to represent, instead of the fat cat drug companies greasing their palms. We, the people have no one to represent us. Things have to change, somehow, but I fear it will get worse before it gets better.

Posted by Jean Davis | Report as abusive
 

I am on the edge of forclosuer now,no savings or investmants left. I am out of work and runing out of finds to survive.I have a wife and 9 year old son who all understand the economic melt down.Wall street is being helped not main street. Economic contraction in the US is on going yet few programs are helping the middel class who are struggeling.

Posted by william t bernal | Report as abusive
 

I have a small business that sells payment processing equipment. This whole year has been terrible due to the fact that many of the small businesses out there are not spending. They are scared!! (as well as I) Why start a business right now when everytime you turn the news a business is going bankrupt. The enviroment out here is getting worse and worse as many businesses are out of money (and savings) after 9 months of losses. These businesses (as well as I) can not go out and make money when people are not spending. Bottom line. Its a trickle down effect. The small business is trully hurting. Where is our bail out!?I have gone from making 200k plus in sales (and growing) to 60K this year. I can not pay my mortgage, I can not pay my credit card bills, nor can I buy anything for my business or make any serious investment in anything.I have really looked seriously into bankruptcy since I cant really see myself making up all these loses. Good luck to all of you small business owners.

Posted by George | Report as abusive
 

All was OK and peachy keen until the gov’t raised our corporate taxes. I decided the paperwork, cost of processing, and the taxes were too scary and frustrating. I closed the business, laid off my employees and retired on what I had been able to arrange over 50+ years of hard work.The economy does not bother me at all. I’m working on liquidation, then I will evaporate to another country. I’m NOT going to stay here in socialism.

Posted by GeneS | Report as abusive
 

To a small extent, principally because I work in banking and ‘bonus’ is a bad word anyway, regardless of the fact I work for a conservative bank on the high street and am working harder than ever – targets have not dropped because there is a recession on! About 3 years ago, I could expect that, with hard work, my salary would be topped up by c.25%, pretty much in-line witha public sector employee in a similar role. This year I will be lucky to see 5%The attitude of the public has been varied, with most seeming to expect ‘the banks’ to help them out, reghardless of whether they are govenment owned or not. There is still a lack of realisation from the public in general of their own liability and the fact they really do owe this money out.The biggest hit of all for me personally is the feeling that my job is no longer secure.

Posted by Adam K | Report as abusive
 

in india we jst faced major job cuts due to world credit crisis also it make affects on our industrial growth & export also …….. bt we recover almost thughout govermnt bailout pakages ,,,,,, & FII investmnt in our countrythats our gr88888 india !!!!!!!

Posted by shantnu gupta,bareilly,india | Report as abusive
 

Lost 60% of my savings- some recoverymy present is ok but my future uncertain and a business investment lost. Merrill Lynch recklessness responsible for much of the loss. Unbelievable how they used their retail clients (individual ivestors) to feed their fees and investment banking. Hopefullyh their will be some justice. Regultors need to follow the money for wrongful practices.

Posted by Thomas On | Report as abusive
 

I ran a foreign money market fund starting back in 2004 that did extremely well. In mid 2006, I had two partners who became beligerent as they kept badgering me regarding how much money Bernie Madoff was making for them. My objectives were far more conservative and I was earning 300 basis points over US money market equivalents in overnight money. I had other partners who were tossing my auditted financial statements, highlighting what I thought was stellar performance, in the garbage. I couldn’t get arrested selling my fund’s performance while writing papers about the coming credit debacle. My Lawyer, whom I have known for 25 years, convinced me to shut down that fund that these partners weren’t worth the effort. In late 2006, I closed my fund and fired my partners and never regretted it. They all lost substantial amounts of funds through other managers. And the two who had money with Madoff? Both of their names were on the infamous list…couldn’t have happened to two greedier goniffs.

Posted by John P. Crowley | Report as abusive
 

I was laid off in January. Our company did not make it and went belly up. I did not get my severance pay, vacation, or wages. I’ve been collecting unemployment since then and recently decided to go back to school to be productive as well as learn a new trade since I have not been able to find a job. As a result, my checks stopped! with no notice at all! I have a family of nine and my husband’s hours were recently cutback. I have a great deal of stress and that alone has triggered many illnesses. I’ve worked all my life only to be denied medical benefits, which I feel I’ve contributed too. Our government has really screwed things up and the worst part is that the little people like me, are the ones that reap the consequences. I’m sure they eat and sleep well while I’m here wondering if I will have nexts months rent. My cushion has depleted and we are now leaving paycheck to paycheck. I have never experience such a turbulence like I am now. What next?

 

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