The 2008-2009 recession can be considered as the worst recession since the Great Depression.
For those of you who are unfamiliar with the Great Depression, it began in 1929 and lasted for 10 years.
Here’s a little blurb taken from About.com on the Great Depression of 1929:
“Its kickoff in the U.S. economy was ‘Black Thursday,’ October 24, 1929, when 12.9 million shares of stock were sold in one day, triple the normal amount. Over the next four days, prices fell 23%. This was known as the stock market crash of 1929.
Unemployment Reached 25% During the Great Depression:
Life During The Great Depression:
The Depression caused many farmers to lose their farms. At the same time, years of erosion and a drought created the ‘Dust Bowl’ in the Midwest, where no crops could grow. Thousands of these farmers and other unemployed workers traveled to California to find work. Many ended up living as homeless ‘hobos’ or in shantytowns called ‘Hoovervilles’.”
I’m sure many of us have heard stories from our grandparents about the hardships they endured. I personally never have, because both sets passed away when I was very young and weren’t even in North America. But I have heard stories about the scrimping and saving, trying to survive on what little money they had. And I thought to myself, I hope I never have to live through that. While I never have, I did experience the effects of the 2008 recession. Although it was not to the extreme, things were very tense at my job at the time. People were getting laid off from the company. There were other reasons had contributed why I left that job. I felt I couldn’t stay at the job until I found another one, so I spent a few months being unemployed and then spent a year working in full-time in retail.
While it may not have seemed like a big deal to others, it was extremely hard for me to work that job. I felt above it, having graduated at a prestigious university and having worked a couple of years at a professional job. I was embarrassed because my friends were working at professional jobs or working on developing their professional career through additional schooling. I felt retail jobs were for students or for people who didn’t care about their careers. But like so many other people, I had to swallow my pride and accept it. A job is a job. I needed the money and at that point I took whatever I could get. Looking back at it, I really hated the job and hated the people who came to shop there because they had more or acted like they had more money than me.
I vaguely remember the early 1990s recession. A stock market crash occurred in 1987. Growing up in the 80s, I didn’t know what it meant, except my parents kept saying we were in a recession and money is a little bit tighter than usual. I can make a general assumption that the majority of pf bloggers grew up in the 80s and 90s, so you probably don’t remember this too well either. But our parents did. Why? They were adults. They had to work for a living. To support their family. To pay the mortgage. To put food on the table.
And that is why we remember the 2008 recession. Many of us had either recently graduated or were just starting out in our professional careers. We were just getting a taste of what it was like to earn a salary before the crash happened.
While nobody can predict the future or when the next recession can occur, we can only try to learn from the past ones because history does repeat itself.