MR posted THIS.
Here in the D.C. area, I've recently noticed something that I haven't seen since the recession first came down on our heads: less traffic on the roads.
I'm not sure when this volume change occurred. Over the summer, I think. Of course, traffic is usually lighter over the summer, so I didn't think much of the ease of traveling then.
But now school has resumed for all in the region. And, still, traffic is perceptibly below the usual levels. This drop cannot be attributed to telecommuting as the level of telecommuting now is the same as it was last May (as far as I know). In spite of the road construction going on, I'm now making my commute to work in less than 15 minutes; last May, my commute took at least 25 minutes.
Just recently, I was astounded when I learned that KFC had closed many of its outlets here in the region. These shutdowns occurred at some point in the last three months.
For the most part, restaurants, high end and medium end, have very little business as of this past summer -- in spite of all the specials and coupon deals.
Office space and retail space is sitting empty all over the place! As our residences -- and in surprising places too, places that usually are snapped up within 48 hours by renters or buyers.
The news keeps saying that we've had bump in the housing market here. But I can tell you for a FACT that the bump in only in certain areas of the D.C. Metropolitan Region: Tysons Corner, most noticeably as the new Metro Rail is getting closer to completion, and Georgetown, as two examples.
Newsflash! Not! The recession didn't end. We're not in a double dip recession. We're in a depression. Frankly, I cannot see a path out of this mess.
The Corporation I work for had a great first seven months.
THEN, OUR NUMBERS WENT OFF A CLIFF, and the falling has not stopped.
After two solid months of dropping numbers, with about 1/5 of our sales force on the verge of being fired (because they are not meeting our quotas) Management met with us yesterday.
I fully expected we were going to be threatened, chewed out, or at least given the mother of all "pep talks".
"Go get 'em guys. Don't let this get you down. We're in a rocky place in the economy. How do you feel about the kind of numbers your putting out? Do you want to do better? If so, we're here to help."
I've been in biz for over 25 years and I have never heard anything like it.
I hear ya.
This year, my income is down over 25%! I'm not making beans in the first place, now making less that beans.
Same thing with the traffic here. I'd say it's off a good 40-50 %.
Empty malls and stores? Check.
And as for houses -- down the street sits a house owned by a military couple who was transferred to North Carolina in July. They knew the move was coming so put the house on the market almost 2 years ago, at the price they originally paid for it.
Back in May they dropped the price 25%, $50,000.
And they are still lucky to get one or two showings a MONTH.
ince my unemloyment ran out in June, my wife and I are now trying to get by on ONE THIRD of what we were bringing home 3 years ago. And as you know the prices of things are not 1/3 of what they were 3 years ago.
It is a challenge.
You live in Obamaville, MR.
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