Looking to the Past to Think About the Next Recession

Economic downturns are a fact of life. Even in strong and long-lasting free-market systems like the one in the United States, history shows that there will be tough times. Major slowdowns like the Great Depression from almost 90 years ago, as well as the Great Recession that began nearly a decade back, can teach people a lot.

Some believe that the next major recession is likely to start in the next several years, and that it could be really bad for certain people based on the recent Great Recession and its consequences.

One one hand, many Americans feel secure right now knowing that unemployment figures have been low and stock market numbers have been high.

However, the recent stock market correction is starting to undermine some of that confidence on Wall Street and across the country. Meanwhile, despite some contentment with recent tax cuts, there is concern that they will result in a larger deficit and to inflation.

While barely any living Americans can remember the Great Depression, many can recall what life was like under the Great Recession. It is nerve-rattling to potentially return to a time in which jobs and credit are hard to come by and people are losing their homes.

One of the most worrisome aspects of any new recession is that even a smaller economic downturn might hurt certain people even worse than the last one did. The federal government as well as many state governments have been attempting to roll back benefits for unemployed people. This means that if a new recession occurs that does lead to lost jobs, many who become unemployed this time around will not receive as much or any support from the government.

Additionally, the economy has changed drastically in the past decade, creating numerous jobs that provide few or no benefits such as health insurance. In times of hardship, more people might take these jobs, but they will have to pay for health care out of pocket.