Help! Is there an economist in the house? – Notes from the Healthcare Staffing Summit [pt. 4]

Keynote with Alan Beaulieu: Help! Is there an economist
in the house?

Alan Beaulieu,
Senior Economist for the Institute for Trend Research
had
a great session at the Healthcare Staffing Summit last week. Two years ago he presented at this same conference
and predicted the downturn in the economy almost to the dollar and date. At the time, things were going so
well most people thought he must be way off. Turns out he was right on. So this
year, we all listened intently to what he had to say.

Interestingly, Alan tried to
convince us that he would only speak facts and avoid politics. However, I’ve
never listened to anyone talk about the economy and successfully remove their
political slant. In this regard he did a decent job – but at the end some of
his comments were somewhat political. Specifically, he stated that the cost of
healthcare reform could make U.S. businesses less competitive internationally. Perhaps. But
there are several arguments that suggest healthcare reform will make U.S. businesses more competitive.
Right now, American businesses have the burden of providing healthcare for
their employees while no other country has this same cost. Removing this cost
could help U.S. employers tremendously in terms of competition. Regardless of
who’s right – you can’t tell me this isn’t a political statement.

Alan went on to take a few more cracks at the government. Toward the end he said "but don't get me wrong. I'm very civic minded. I took public transportation to get here today. I drove a GM." Very clever.

Medium_charlie

Here are my notes on his session:

  • The economy will
    rebound. However, it won’t be a “V” or a “W” – it will be a “U” and it will be a long U. Kind of like Charlie Browns smile.
  • It could take up
    to 10 years (2020) before we return to 2007 levels.
  • Right now is a
    great time to create wealth.
  • Investing in property, Fed-Ex (international shipping), CAT (international building)
    and even publicly traded staffing companies like AMN and Cross Country are all
    good investments right now.
  • Invest in food, water,
    energy, healthcare and green companies.
  • Unemployment is worse than the
    government anticipated.
  • For the 1st half of 2010 unemployment will get to 10%+
    and then improve to 7-8.5% and stay at this rate for a long time.
  • Inflation is coming and is unavoidable.

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Notes from the Healthcare Staffing Summit 2009 [Pt. 1]

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