Prosperity in The Age of Decline
Includes information on the leading economic indicators that most reliably achieve results Shows how to preserve wealth and avoid the most common investing pitfalls
This comprehensive resource offers guidelines for averting cyclical downturns and building on rising industry trends. BRIAN BEAULIEU is an economist, principal and CEO with ITR Economics ™ (ITR). At ITR ® , Brian has been leading the charge in applied research regarding business cycle trend analysis and the utilization of that research at a practical business level. Brian consults with companies worldwide and has provided valuable insight to business owners and executives for 27 years with the result being increased profitability and greater awareness of business cycle opportunities. ALAN BEAULIEU is a principal and the President of ITR Economics ™ . Alan is also the senior economic advisor to a variety of U.S. and European trade associations. He is the keynote speaker at corporate and trade association meetings worldwide where he provides a clear economics forecasts and proven profit-enhancing strategies to businesses across a wide spectrum of industries. Alan’s knowledge and expertise are in great demand, as evidenced by his extremely busy calendar that includes 120 speaking engagements a year.
Prosperity in The Age of Decline
Results That No One Can Ignore
You Can Successfully Prepare for an Unknown Future
You and I must make tough decisions with imperfect knowledge. That is what business leaders and investors do every day. The world is an uncertain place, and according to many people, it is an unknowable future. Yet paradoxically, most of us at times assume that current trends, be they financial, cultural, or political, will last into the future. This latter assumption presupposes that we can see the future. It is into the vortex of trends, uncertainties, and risk that we all plunge daily.
You address major decisions regularly. Sixty-five percent of businesses in America employ more than 100 people. We chose the word people and this approach over a discussion on labor as a factor of production because the latter is more sterile and would eliminate the often gut-wrenching nature of the decisions you make. Talking about people emphasizes the importance of those decisions and the risk involved in making the wrong decision. The decisions you make will have a direct impact on people's lives.
You are also likely directly or indirectly responsible for the decision making involved in the $875.1 billion in nondefense capital goods shipments made last year or the $117.8 billion in capital goods shipments related to the defense industry. Should you make the capital commitment that could potentially make or break the future of the company?
All decisions involve risk to the health of the firm, to the financial well-being of people who are depending on you, and to your personal wealth and well-being. This book is about how you can minimize the uncertainties and thus minimize the risk in decision making and prosper. We show you that you can have 94.7 percent confidence in what the economy will be doing and that you can prosper professionally and personally with that knowledge through both the short and the longer term.
You are also no doubt an investor to one degree or another and have an interest in the $18.7 trillion U.S. stock market. The decisions you make here are extremely important to your future success and wealth. Later in the book we present investment ideas that are age specific and driven by a solid, reasoned view of the economic future of the United States and its major trading partners. The world will face some significant difficulties, but you and your family can be financially successful.
We argue that common perceptions can result in misallocation of resources and unnecessary worry. People were obsessed with China supposedly stealing all of our manufacturing jobs and in the process growing to be the largest economic country in the world. Neither proved to be true. Some people did indeed make money on this assumption in the past, but clinging to this assumption can lead to expensive capital expenditure or personal investment mistakes. The current reality is that manufacturing as a percent of gross domestic product (GDP) is on the rise in the United States. The China-manufacturing fixed-trend assumption makes it nearly impossible to get an accurate view of the future. How can anyone put together a three- or five-year plan for company growth, or a winning investment strategy, with a false view of the future?
Low interest rates, burgeoning government debt, and an aging population are but three of the major driving trends we present in this book. We discuss which trends we think will last and what individual investors and business leaders should do with this knowledge. Understanding and acting upon these trends are the keys to prosperity in what will likely be an age of global economic decline.
Where Not to Look
Arguably half the battle in successfully gauging the future and prospering in that future comes from not being misled by false signals. Don't waste time analyzing data that aren't relevant