For Our Utah Financial Clients

 Our company  serves numerous people in widespread locations around the country. However, since we are a Utah based financial company, I thought it might be nice to comment on some of the things going on in our local community.

From the AVO Financial offices in Bountiful, Utah, we have an amazing view of the surrounding area. The beautiful Wasatch Mountains to the east, the picturesque valleys from Ogden to Salt Lake City, the shimmer of the sun on the Great Salt Lake… all are visible from our windows. Each glance  serves as a reminder of just what an outstanding location and community we really have.

But however outstanding it may be, it is not immune to the larger problems facing our nation and the world as a whole at this time. Here’s an example.

I have a good friend who works at a furniture shop in Ogden. He’s been an employee there for several years and figured he knew what to expect this past holiday season. He was wrong. Rather than increasing his hours, which had been declining as the thrift craze reached our state, they were cut nearly in half just during the month of December. The sale signs were up. The deals were there and better than ever. But the customers just didn’t come as they had the years before.

Similar stories can be found all over the state. Though Utah, through the entrepreneurial spirit and know-how that it is famous for, has not felt the heavy hand of this recession the way that many other states have, there has been a significant increase in unemployment and business closures. This has resulted in a significant reduction in taxes and other revenues for the state.

The good news is that Utah is an adaptive place. Its cities are filled with intelligent and creative people who have found ways to adjust to tough times in the past. It’s time for that creative spirit to really shine again.

The awful situation that many of us have found ourselves in should really drive home the point that things have changed. The business world, and the situation of those businesses’ remaining employees, is a very different picture from the one our grandparents lived in. The pace is quicker, the stakes are higher, and consistent success can only be achieved through constant change and development. Retirement benefits are becoming a thing of the past and company loyalty has lost much of its worth. As the rules change at the workplace, we need to make equivalent changes in planning for our futures.

If you want to retire, now is the time to take responsibility for that goal’s success or failure through your own planning methods. You may think that your company or country owes you a secure future after your years of service and patriotism. Maybe you’re right. But I can promise you that your company and your country don’t feel the same way. It only takes one look at the dwindling benefits companies offer their workers or a dilapidated veteran’s hospital and you will see why I believe that so strongly. We need to take control of our own future.

If you have a history of investment, now is the time to reevaluate your portfolio to see if you are still heading in the direction you had hoped. If you are not, then it’s time to go back to the drawing board with a financial adviser who is current with the times. If you have never considered investment, now is the time to learn more about what is available to you. Even if you decide not to invest at this time, you will gain a better understanding of:

  • Why we are where we are financially as a state and a country.
  • How you can keep your dreams on track.

It may surprise some people to learn that the 401K that they are given as a substitute for old-time retirement benefits, in fact, transforms them into an investor, willing or not. Each of us needs to understand the rules and situations our hard earned money is being subjected to.

There is more to investment than the stock market (in an older post I listed just a few of thealternative investments out there.) But there is more to financial planning than investment. It is time for the people of our great state (and everywhere else for that matter) to catch up with where the world of finance has gone. As things continue to change you will reap the benefits of the knowledge you acquire. If you don’t know where to start, try looking at your local financial companies. Many offer a free financial plan or consultation. Also, recognizing the importance of reeducating the community on finances, many local Utah news stationshave provided services on their websites to further the community’s fiscal know-how.

Utah is a family state and we emphasize the importance of education to our young people regularly, firm in our conviction. It’s time that we, as the adult population of the Great State of Utah and as a country, put the same emphasis on educating ourselves.

This Blog is provided as a service by AVO Financial. For more information about our services, click on the “About AVO Financial” page above or visit us at www.AVOFinancial.com. And for great information about how to teach your children about money and finance check out our new AVO Financial Money and Kids Blog.