Recession Express | Online Universities

There comes a point in the movie Titanic when it finally dawns on the fated ship’s passengers that they’re going down. Of course, by that time, it’s too late for most of them. They scream, fight, fall from incredible heights (like that propeller guy… ouch!), and overturn lifeboats, only to suffer the same watery death in the North Atlantic. Like the Titanic of old, our economy is heading for an iceberg, if we have not already hit it and are taking on water.

Not all job sectors will sink to an icy doom. As has been reported and regurgitated across the internet, some job sectors are supposedly “recession-proof,” like health care and information technology. That’s great- the flood of people switching to careers in health care will probably neutralize any benefits that might have been had. Perhaps of more concern, however, should be those careers that are most likely to get hit hard by the recession. You know, give those folks time to get to the lifeboats.
This list is based on two simple economic assumptions. First, tighter regulation and control, particularly in lending institutions, will severely limit the number of loans made. Second, when jobs start disappearing, people stop spending on things they don’t really need. Even if they hold onto their job, they’re still spooked enough to hit the brakes on those shopping sprees. Based on these assumptions, the following job sectors are most likely to get hit hard by the recession. Consider yourself forewarned:
1. Mortgage Lending – I know, I know. No big light bulb on this one. These people have been getting sent to the slaughter in droves for months. With mortgage standards tightening up, the number of loans approved will drop, taking loan officer commissions with them. Needless to say, it is no longer the kind of business where you just have to get your license and some cute business cards and watch the money roll in.
2. Real Estate Sales – Your local realtor would tell you that now is a great time to buy a home. “It’s a buyer’s market,” they would say, and they would be right. But that’s good news only for first-time homebuyers. If you think about it, most people need to sell their existing home before they can get into another one. If it’s a buyer’s market, that means more houses are being sold than there are people to buy them. And that means most people won’t be able to get into their new home because they won’t be able to sell their existing home. Also, during a recession, consumers get very nervous about throwing their money around. That means they may forego buying that house until things get better. Add in tougher loan guidelines, and you’re looking at a rough ride for real estate agents.
3. Retail – Specifically, retail of luxury goods, things people don’t necessarily need. People will always need basic food and clothing. But when inflation goes up and people’s financial futures are in doubt, you can bet that the first things to get cut from the old budget will be plasma TVs, Coach handbags, luxury cars, and other nice-to-haves. This translates into instability for those who work in retail (unless they are selling necessary goods).
4. Leisure – Tourism and other leisure industries are likely to take a hit. When extra spending money dries up, so do family cruises, visits to the spa, and Disneyworld vacations. People will forego the body peel, the upper lip waxing, or jet skiing in Tahiti in favor of saving for a rainy day, which could come sooner than later. Ironically, many people may find themselves less stressed knowing they’ve got their backs covered than they would have after that Swedish deep-tissue massage.
5. Entertainment – Unfortunately, concert tickets, movie tickets, and music CDs are considered luxury items. And Hollywood has never been shy about downsizing its workforce in lean times. Rest assured it won’t be Tom Hanks or Angelina Jolie taking a pay cut. Movie extras, production assistants, and stagehands, beware! Your chances of really making it in the biz never were very good. So now is a great time to jump ship and find stable ground.
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