Sound Off

Questions, Please: Our Rattled Economy

Y'all, on news that the Federal Reserve is whacking the interest rate by three-quarters of a point, the BPP is going all out on the economy. We need your questions/comments, please.

Specifically, we need questions from listeners about the economy — anything and everything you that you're wondering about. The interest rate, the mortgage crisis, the national debt, the possible $800 tax rebate — if you're wanting to ask, this is a great chance. We'll put the best questions to a guest on the air.

Second, we're wondering if anyone of you have noticed changes in your own spending habits. If you're worried about the economy, tell us what set those butterflies off. (Me, I started noticing that my pockets went empty a lot faster than I expected — a brush with stagnant income in a world of rising prices. You?)



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My husband and I want to buy a house in the next few months. Will a recession affect the purchase?

We were at the grocery store over the weekend and noticed prices have definitely gone up. Won't prices go down during a recession?

I'm just not sure what the direct impact of a recession will have on our household and I'd really like to know!

Sent by Dani | 12:05 PM | 1-22-2008

Apropos of Dani's comment on prices: Does the Fed cutting rates so much put us at risk of inflation?

Sent by Sarah | 12:18 PM | 1-22-2008

I'm already hearing noise about worst recession since the depression (on the McLaughlin Group as I recall, who got the rate cut prediction right too). Is that where we're headed? I don't feel it yet. I feel an underlying optimism that seems to say it's just a housing-driven correction, not a bigger event. And I wrong?

Sent by Todd Van Hoosear | 12:25 PM | 1-22-2008

at first, i thought i had a brilliant idea to put a greater percentage of my 401k annuity money (that comes thru my job) into international funds since we were tanking over here........well, so much for that plan, or is it still an idea that has merit??? and what about all the tech and communications funds??? don't they just have to go up steadily in the future? and last but not least, will the retirements of millions of babyboomers really be the straw that breaks our economic backs!!??

Sent by jay | 12:33 PM | 1-22-2008

If I get a tax rebate check, how can I best "stimulate" the economy with it? Should I just spend it? What if I saved or invested it or used it to pay off debt?

Sent by Steve Petersen | 1:11 PM | 1-22-2008

and one more thought...we must retrain and redirect our professional choices so that we value and expand new kinds of jobs for the future...the need for high tech, media, communications and Greening skills must be put on equal pedestal footing as the doctors, accountants, lawyers, ceos etc.etc....our economy will depend on the creativity of new careers

Sent by jay | 1:13 PM | 1-22-2008

if i got a tax rebate check, i would put it towards a digital camera or bigger screen t.v. and a favorite charity! i never understand how on one government hand "they" say "save" and the other government hand says "spend"...please explain!

Sent by jay | 2:11 PM | 1-22-2008

Is it time to start running through the streets screaming "We'll all be killed! We'll all be killed!" yet? If not, when will it be? Generally, the media is little help on this, because every tiniest thing gets hyped until it sounds like The Worst Thing Ever. When will we know that it's seriously time to start worrying?

Sent by Stewart | 2:31 PM | 1-22-2008

My husband and I are feeling squeezed right now, especially with tax payments coming up (he's an independent contractor). Would it be a bad idea to cut back on how much we're contributing to savings funds? We have a monthly payment going to a fund that's supposed to be a house savings account, but it's only losing money now anyway and we could really use the extra cash on hand.

Sent by Kelly | 3:21 PM | 1-22-2008

A lot of economists would argue that the Fed dropping rates puts inflationary pressure on the dollar. Does it make sense to fight recession with inflation? Do we even need the Fed to define the worth of our currency, whereby the Foreign Exchange markets are ultimately more efficient and are a true instrument of a Free Economy?

Sent by Bakh Inamov | 5:22 PM | 1-22-2008

I just heard your comments about the guy from Switzerland spending half as much as he used to. That's great. But what about those of us that live in Europe, working for the DOD, and having the prices rise right out of sight because of the recession?

With the fall of the dollar, going out to dinner, or making purchases on the economy cost at least 1 1/2 times as much as before. Dinner used to cost $20 at the older rates. But now it's at least $30 and sometimes more.

Hopefully the changes that have been made will help bring the dollar back into favor.

Sent by Mike Roark | 8:06 AM | 1-23-2008

The interviewers really, really blew it on those first questions (from Dani). The interviewee said "the price question (about grocery prices) is especially interesting, I'll get back to it" and then the interviewers moved on without giving her the chance to get back to it or reminding her to answer the rest of the question if she forgot. I listened to the whole interview and never heard the answer to the relationship between grocery prices and recession, which would have been more interesting and tangible than many of the other questions.

Sent by johann gruber | 8:37 AM | 1-24-2008

I would like to know what more the government will be mortgaging to get funds for a rebate? Isn't the debt large enough already? I believe it's over $30,000 per person at the moment. Who else is going to lend us funds and have an interest in country? How will spending millions to process a rebate plus the rebate itself fix anything? Shouldn't we live within our means? How will a new president deal with the inherited mess?

Sent by Judy Stearns | 6:45 PM | 1-25-2008