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Old 07-23-2010, 01:24 AM   #41
Confused about dryer sheets
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By 1970, I was working as a young physician, very fortunate to have a "decent" income. I had invested in the stock market in 1969, lost almost everything, and never went back to the market until 1990. In 1979, I accumulated enough down payment to purchase a small condo in LA at a 13% mortgage rate. Prices were escalating rapidly. Just wish I had bought some of those 16% treasury bonds back then.....I had to take time off work to wait in gas lines, just to make hospital calls. Even so, my life was easier than most. And now, I am retired thank goodness. While the future is uncertain, the future of medicine is grim for all of us, especially young physicians and patients.

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Old 07-23-2010, 02:00 PM   #42
Confused about dryer sheets
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Yep.. bought my first house with a 13% mortgage too. Opened my IRA with a 15% 2 year CD. Didn't have a credit card till late in the 70's. Lived paycheck to paycheck just like alot of folks today.

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Old 07-23-2010, 04:00 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by CuppaJoe View Post
Hope you don't lose your shirt. nm, one thing leads to another.
For sure if a man loses his shirt in middle age he will have little further opportunity to renew his virginity loss ceremony. Remember, losing your virginity is a bit like a tetanus shot- it has to be periodically renewed. If your finances are rocky or you plan a very early retirement, lose the V quickly or you may die with it. I recommend a making a video to remind you later on of what it was like.

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Old 07-23-2010, 04:07 PM   #44
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I'm not 55+, but even if the national mood in the 1970s was worse in the general sense -- with respect to the specific issue of retirement, how did it compare? I can't imagine it could have been worse than today with respect to more and more people thinking they can never retire, but I could be wrong. With SS set to face losses without reforms to make it a worse deal, with pensions going the way of the dodo and personal investments going nowhere, that's a trifecta that seems hard to top.
"Hey, for every ten dollars, that's another hour that I have to be in the work place. That's an hour of my life. And my life is a very finite thing. I have only 'x' number of hours left before I'm dead. So how do I want to use these hours of my life? Do I want to use them just spending it on more crap and more stuff, or do I want to start getting a handle on it and using my life more intelligently?" -- Joe Dominguez (1938 - 1997)
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Old 07-23-2010, 05:19 PM   #45
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Originally Posted by ziggy29 View Post
I can't imagine it could have been worse than today with respect to more and more people thinking they can never retire, but I could be wrong.
Many folks in those years in the private sector did not have to worry about saving/investing for retirement since they had a pension (defined benefit), along with SS and any other savings/investments.

Heck, I even had a retirement pension and I was only making $125/week ...

However, vesting for the pension meant that you had to be with the company for at least 10 years (federal rule at the time). I left after 7+ years and gave it up for a better j*b, that paid much better and also had a pension plan. Of course, by the early 80's, that pension program was gone, replaced by the "superior" 401(k), along with the "make & hope" retirement vehicle of the IRA.

My parents/grandparents retired and had a good life, with their pensions and SS, and never saved a cent for retirement. Of course like pensions, they are no longer around....
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Old 07-23-2010, 06:04 PM   #46
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In the 70's investing was another world for me. It was an exciting time in Santa Cruz, where I lived. As long as the rent was paid, and we had food, that was enough. There was no concept of tomorrow. My world was populated with people interested in inner growth and helping others. I am very thankful for those experiences. Of course, there was all that partying in the early 70's - before I got a clue.

In the early 80's I went through a divorce, and found out about the real world re: money and investing. I have been saving, living below my means, and working to improve my lot ever since. I remarried, and we have both stayed on a financially steady path. Now I am grateful for that "awful" lesson when I found myself broke, single, etc. I took heed, and was young enough to recover.

I think the mood is more negative now, because the outlook for young people seems to be pretty bleak - even college grads. I feel sorry for many of the younger generation. But, if one has a job, there are good opportunities for investing with a long time horizon.
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Old 07-23-2010, 08:29 PM   #47
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Originally Posted by haha View Post
....Remember, losing your virginity is a bit like a tetanus shot- it has to be periodically renewed....
My doc recommends every ten years for the shot. Note to self: seek second opinion.
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Old 07-24-2010, 02:24 AM   #48
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I didn't pay much attention to national economics at all. Started with the police dept. when I was a week shy of 23, still living with my parents at the time, and didn't know what to do with all the money. The day I started I was making half again as much as my father had at his peak.

By the time I was out of the academy, which lasted almost six months, I'd saved about $3,500 simply because the classwork was so intense and studying took so much time there wasn't time to even think about partying.

In 1974 I got my first apartment and with the money I'd saved, did the wise and sensible thing, and bought an airplane. Many people know how expensive boats can be. Airplanes are worse.

The recession of 1973-74 was something I read about in the newspaper - I was rolling in dough. Savings? That was what I did to pay for the annual inspection on the airplane.

Married in 1978, divorced in 1983-84, I ended up with two pickup trucks worth of furniture and $7,400 in the bank and felt grateful that I wasn't looking at child support and alimony payments. I do remember thinking about saving hard for a house because the interest rates and housing prices were going up fast and we did buy a house after a year in an apartment, living on one paycheck and saving the other.

Moved into my own house in January 1986, more than just a bit awed that between the two years remaining on a loan for a pickup truck and the house I was a bit over six figures in debt on a gross income of $38k.

So who had time to think about the national economy?
I heard the call to do nothing. So I answered it.
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Old 07-24-2010, 12:32 PM   #49
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I held a job in the oil-rich country in Alberta. Things were going well. I joint-ventured a multi-unit apartment building with a builder and doubled my money in 18 months. However, after eight years of excellent earnings, I let my ego get in the way of greed and acepted of position in HQ back east.

Held a bridge loan of $250k to buy a house until the last one sold. Interest peaked at 22%. Since then I have had a healthy view on saving and paying with cash.

We were not immune to the malaise, but just could not relate to it.
For the fun of it...Keith
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Old 07-25-2010, 03:39 PM   #50
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I graduated from college in the 70's and started my career. I didn't think about investing then---but I was concerned about ever being able to buy a house---lots of inflation and mortgage rates of 14%. I did buy a small house in a working class neighborhood. When mortgage interest rates dropped to 10% I sold that house and bought the house I now live in----started out with the 10% mortgage, refinanced at 7.3% and paid off years early. It was definitely a different interest rate environment. It was a good time to have money in savings, but at that point in my life, just starting out, I was a borrower not a saver.
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Old 07-25-2010, 06:22 PM   #51
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Originally Posted by Onward View Post
Vague question in search of a subjective answer, I know, but this has really been haunting me lately:
Was the national mood and investor sentiment worse in the 70s, or today?
I was too young then to trust my memories now.
I'm only 49, but try to imagine the national mood and investor sentiment with:
- a military draft
- an unpopular war in progress
- price controls
- lines at the gas station... until the gas runs out
- desperate hope and subsidies for alternative energy
- double-digit inflation
- out-of-control pollution
- a "lost decade" of investment returns (thank goodness for dividends)
- gold bugs everywhere
- auto manufacturers and cities going bankrupt

Oh, I see, no wonder people are beginning to make the comparison.

But I think the mood was a lot bleaker back then. I can't imagine what 1970s Pittsburgh would have been like 2000s Detroit without a good football team.


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