By Catherine McBreen
I am not sure how most of you are feeling this week about our government, but my sense is that we are all a bit disgusted with our elected representatives, regardless of which party you support. Additionally, news this morning is that even if they are able to find a compromise and increase the debt limit, the ratings agencies will still downgrade the U.S. credit rating unless the cuts they agree to our substantive. Frankly, I’m not sure our government has successfully done anything “substantive” in recent years.
My dilemma is ….what do I do about my own investments…meager as they may be? And when do I do it? Do I need to move my money around in the next week? My little tiny savings accounts and my 401(k)? And if so….what do I move them into? The typical answer would be money market accounts and similar types of investments. But those investments are heavily fueled with Treasury bonds and other governmental types of investments. Is that good or bad?
Additionally, it goes without saying that the stock market will probably tank. So do I leave my money in the market with the old adage…”over the long term” things will work out. I’m not so sure I believe that anymore.
I could take all of my money out of brokerage accounts, pay taxes, because they have gone up in the past year, and put everything in a bank CD….but the rates really stink. Plus how do I know the banks are going to be OK. Sure…I know FDIC savings and all that…..but I can’t put my 401(k) into a CD.
Maybe I should put all of my 401(k) money into a GIC? But aren’t GICs also funded by Treasuries?
Personally, I am in the unfortunate position of being one of those people who know a little about a lot…but nothing that can help me figure out this dilemma. But I do believe that a lot of other people are feeling the same way that I am. This feeling of imminent doom is increasing. Isn’t it possible that the panic of people like myself is going to start impacting the markets?
Let’s keep our fingers crossed that our well-meaning but often pig-headed legislators will figure out how to do the right thing. My confidence isn’t high.