Thursday, January 19, 2017

Personal Finance in a Trump Administration

(See also "Personal Finance in a Deflationary Period" and "Don't Care If the Money's No Good," both from 2010.)

Avoid debt. There appears to be a long-term policy goal of making it impossible to get out of deep debt, once one is in it (student loans, bankruptcy "reform," etc. etc.) and with Mnuchin the likely Treasury Secretary this will only get worse. I think there will probably be an explosion in the national debt and, at the same time, possibly inflation, so that most financial assets will lose their value. Ownership of useful property is probably valuable; if you can buy your own house or capital property without taking on debt that might be wise. Insured bank deposits are not a bad bet, but do not expect the government to make good on bank deposits should the banks be brought down again: the FDIC and NCUA may run out of funds, and these may not be replenished.

(Based on a short note on John Scalzi's blog.)