China and Caring for Ageing Parents

The Economy: US economic acceleration continues with no recession bells ringing. This gives the Fed leeway to continue with its two pronged tightening action of raising interest rates and shrinking its balance sheet. This double whammy has never happened before so all bets are off as to how this will play out. Will the asset bubble slowly deflate or will it burst? This is the only question that investors need think about. This is the tide that raises or lowers all boats. Understand that we are wildly optimistic and bullish on America. We can make a sound case that this is still the American Century and will continue to be long into the future. The China Supremacy narrative ignores massive challenges. Beyond the glittering new cities are a billion peasants living in abject poverty and farming with medieval hand tools. After decades of the 1-child policy, the population is ageing faster than the economy can handle. With lowest-cost labor now in Southeast Asia, many unemployed Chinese workers are leaving the cities and returning to the already impoverished countryside. As Jordan Peterson is fond of saying, “Never underestimate the Americans. They are the most robust people the world has ever known.”

Food for Thought: Ageing parents are a concern for Boomers. Deteriorating mental and physical health is only the tip of the iceberg. Even the soundest financial plan can be destroyed by unplanned expenses … and they are going to occur. The dark side of extended lifespans is the incredible expense of living incrementally longer. Forewarned is forearmed. Unless you abandon your parents to the street, you are going to be involved. Plan accordingly. Having a plan is based on knowing what is where. Google: “family inventory worksheet” for checklists that will provide guidance. Remember the old Chinese proverb: “The beginning of wisdom is to call things by their right names.” Use the Family Inventory as a basis for helping your parents.