There’s no doubt about it, it's been a volatile economic year. We've been bombarded by dramatic rises and falls on the stock market, talks of a full-blown trade war with China, threats of a recession, and the continuing saga of the Brexit fall-out. Yet, every year at the end of November, Thanksgiving comes around to remind us to reflect on the good around us. Family, friends, and a good turkey dinner are all high on the gratitude list but is there economic news to be thankful for this year? Actually, there is!
Here are five economic developments that you should be thankful for right now.
Stable Job and Wage Growth
Despite all the negative headlines, the instability, and the warnings about the impending recession, the cold hard numbers still consistently show a healthy job market. Jobs and wages are among the most significant economic indicators so these positive numbers are actually a pretty big deal. With more jobs and higher wages comes confident consumers who will both spend money and invest money.
Solid United States Housing Market
Let’s look at the real estate front. For the first time since 2011, there is virtually no risk of a housing bubble in the United States. This is according to the annual UBS Global Real Estate Bubble Index, which analyzes the housing markets of 24 global financial centers. While many housing markets in European cities are ranked "unsustainably high," none of the markets in the five major U.S. cities listed in the report are in that category. Thankfully, that means there is minimal risk for the housing market to crash, which is another piece of good economic news we should be thankful for this year.
Rising Clean Energy ETFs
Clean energy stocks have been consistently gaining momentum, and there is evidence that that trend will continue. At the recent UN climate summit, more than 60 countries pledged to become carbon neutral by 2050. As governments push clean energy regulations, we can expect to see even more expansion in the industry. That's good news for the planet and for the economy.
The Legal Cannabis Industry
For economic reasons alone, the cannabis industry gave us a lot to be grateful for this year. By expanding the legality of cannabis, the government created a legal cannabis product market ripe with economic opportunity. Within a short time, what was once a small and mostly underground operation was transformed into a thriving, regulated industry. In fact, according to a report by Grand View Research, Inc, the global legal marijuana market size is expected to reach USD 66.3 billion by the end of 2025. That type of "something from nothing" creation is excellent news for the economy.
Even If It Gets Bad, It Can Still Be Good
Plenty of analysts predict that we are about to enter a period of stock pullback or correction. However, even in that situation, investors who have their eyes on long-term growth should still be thankful. As long as you are a bit more open to risk, bear markets offer lots of great bargains that can lead to steady, long-term portfolio growth. For example, the tobacco company Altria is currently taking a hit. Still, some investors are buying cheap shares, with the expectation that the markets will eventually reassign high value to the company. So even when the market dips, dig a little deeper, and you'll see that there is still a lot to be thankful for.
Happy Turkey Day, Investors
Our minds tend to focus on bad news and we become obsessed with negative predictions. But while 2019 was undoubtedly a rollercoaster year, these five positive economic developments show us that there is still plenty of sunshine despite the gloomy forecasts. So when you sit around the table later this month, raise a toast to the economy. There truly is a lot to be grateful for.