For baby boomers ‘fear’ wins.

This will seem simplistic and controversial but it’s time we faced up to a demographic reality, for our aging population an unavoidable psychological state has become overwhelmingly prevalent, the cup is now half-empty. Journalistic commentary via the major financial media sources can be split into two camps the fear camp, predominantly those representing the baby-boomer generation, and the optimists, being the Gen X, Y and now Z’s. As one commentary we crossed recently put it, it’s created a financial situation where those in the baby-boom generation (the holders of majority of major assets) are developing a concentrically smaller mindset in terms of wealth whilst those in the younger generations simply do not have the financial clout to overcome a disproportionate distribution of assets. In simple terms there are those that can’t afford to sell and those that can’t afford to buy. An economic impasse is the consequence. Can the reality of this demographic psychology be ignored? Of course there are exceptions to the journalistic encampment rule (Ross Gittins of the SMH we are looking at you). However, true innovative thinking, be it financial or social, won’t flourish when oppressed by ageing conservatism. There is no place for global economic naivety, in going on five years Europe has failed to adequately address it’s problems, America’s recovery remains tentative and China’s growth has necessarily slowed. But our own growth and resilience as an economy is being hampered from within. Is it time the older generation reassessed their stance and question their legacy? Is this necessarily a new phenomenon or magnified by our populations weighting? Should we be surprised that the middle-class is predicted to continue to decline? Of course time will tell.

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2 thoughts on “For baby boomers ‘fear’ wins.

  1. I think this is the elephant in the room in all discussions about the current economic situation – I wish it got more attention. Here in New Zealand there was a big trend to buy properties as investment for Baby Boomers so now the price of entry into the property market has skyrocketed even when taken as relative to net income – now no one in their 20s can afford a first home now when 40 years ago everyone could. I assume there are similar issues everywhere… take the lack of will to push the retirement age up despite the massive rise in life expectancy. Younger generations have inherited a world where all the environmental and social debts of the previous half-century are only just getting called in. Not cool…

  2. Almost exactly nine months after World War II ended, “the cry of the baby was heard across the land,” as historian Landon Jones later described the trend. More babies were born in 1946 than ever before: 3.4 million, 20 percent more than in 1945. This was the beginning of the so-called “baby boom.” In 1947, another 3.8 million babies were born; 3.9 million were born in 1952; and more than 4 million were born every year from 1954 until 1964, when the boom finally tapered off. By then, there were 76.4 million “baby boomers” in the United States. They made up almost 40 percent of the nation’s population.’

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