Financial Planning

Tell us your story … and try not to depress us


OK, I knew people were down on the economy. It didn't take a psychic to figure that out. But I didn't know just how down they were until I read the results of the latest Business and Industry Economic Outlook Survey conducted by the AICPA and the University of North Carolina’s Kenan-Flagler Business School.

Among business executives, the survey found that economic pessimists outnumber optimists by a 16-to-1 ratio.

“The outlook is overwhelmingly pessimistic,” said Arleen Thomas, AICPA senior vice president for member competency and development. “Most CPAs working in business and industry don’t expect any improvement in the U.S. economy before the second half of 2009 or the first half of 2010.”

It's just the latest in a string of bad economy-related headaches. The drum is beating over and over and over again, and it's beating me down in the process.

What I want is a little optimism for a change.

I've seen evidence of it here and there. Some are saying CPAs will be among the fortune few whose businesses will thrive as regulators try to fix the financial mess. Others say that, despite all the gloom and doom, Maryland's economy is primed for future success.

Good starts, but I want more ... and that's where you come in.

Tell us what you're doing to sustain yourself until the storm passes. Dig down deep, folks, and find those nuggets of optimism. Maybe they're in your business strategy. Maybe they're in the advice you're giving to clients or in your own financial situation. Maybe they're hiding out in a little homespun, folksy philosophy. Wherever they are, dig 'em out and share 'em with us.

God knows we could use a little good news these days.


Bill Sheridan