Every single person who has access to television news or a newspaper is aware of the global financial turmoil. The collapse of Lehman brothers did send a very powerful shockwave across the global financial fraternity. The factors that led to this financial meltdown are very complex and it did not happen over night or even over a year. It has been building up for quite a while and eventually the indiscriminate lending to boost the consumption has created a scenario where there is no more cash left in the system to lend. But how much will a layman understand by these terms recession, credit crunch, slow down, melt down etc? I was in fact taken by surprise when a colleague of mine said that she did not opt for a software job because there is a financial turmoil in the US.
Recently I came across this email forward carrying the subject, “An Interesting Article By Yogesh Chabbria” and it spoke about how Lehman brothers collapsed. I’d never heard of this author before so I requested my demigod google to throw some light and figured out that he is an economist and the article was posted in the website www.moneycontrol.com. The article is very an excellent one and very lucid. It sums up the whole story of the financial crisis in a few sentences and even gives out suggestions on how to act in this scenario and it is a must read and here it goes.
LATELY, I have been thinking a lot about the Lehman crisis . Spending money that they didn't have and going beyond their means is one of the main reasons for their situation today. In fact that is the cause for the current economic crisis in the US. When I see all this happening, I can only remember the good old days. Then, karz was bad. People looked down upon those who took loans. Parents would not give their daughter's hand in marriage to a man with loans. But of course, the times have changed now. Everyone I know has a loan. The buzz word is EMI (equated monthly installment) . Today, you can buy everything on EMI - a house, a television, even an i-Pod. In fact I know of someone who just bought a fancy BMW 3 series on EMI, instead of buying a cheaper car outright with cash. I mostly prefer to take public transport, but then I am an old man with old thoughts!
Anyway, coming back to what caused the crisis. Imagine having Rs 2 lakh in your bank account, no regular income, yet buying a house worth Rs 65 lakh, in the hope of selling it for a higher price. Even if the price of the house fell by just 5 per cent (that is Rs 3 lakh), you will go bankrupt.
This is what Lehman Brothers did; with around USD 20 billion they went and bought assets worth over USD 600 billion. Isn't it suicidal and simply foolish?
I am sure things would have been different, had I been the head of Lehman brothers. But who wants an old conservative man like me to head a complex financial institution.
But there are a few lessons that we can learn:
1.Live a balanced life and avoid overspending.
2.Don't buy things we don't need.
3.Don't buy Branded goods.
4.Don't buy excess Food, Cloths, Cosmetics, Footwear, electronics and Fashion accuracies
just think before you buy.
Tip: World still has a lot of growth ahead and the future holds immense opportunities for us. Let us make the most of it and save and invest it wisely instead of wasting our precious little on things we don't need.
5.Try to balance life with work (No one is happy to work in their professions) .
6. Don't stress out your self, after work try to do some extra activities like swimming, yoga, walking, running where you can divert your mind from stress.
A thumb rule: Health is more important than money.
7.Try to understand each other (Wife and Husband) in financial matters and help each other.
Tip: As soon as you get your monthly salary, set aside a fixed amount, usually 35 per cent, for insurance, savings and investments. You can then spend the rest.
8. Not all loans are bad. Loans that are 'need based' (home loans, education loans) can always find a place in your finances against those that are largely 'want based' (Credit cards, personal loans, car loans).
9. Borrow only if repayment is financially comfortable.
A thumb rule: Keep EMIs within 35 to 45 per cent of your monthly income In that respect, there is one American who I really respect – Warren Buffet. He has lived in the same ordinary house for over three decades, drives his own medium sized car and leads an extremely regular 'middle class' life. If that's all it takes for the richest person on earth to be happy, why do all of us need to take extra stress just so that we can get things which aren't even essential?