What Makes Life Meaningful

Published on: 10/18/2022

In this edition of Chart Talk, Tony Ogorek and Jeff Viksjo discuss what aspects of life create the most meaning for people and how that could be impacting financial decisions.





Welcome to another edition of Chart Talk.  I’m Tony Ogorek.  I’m here with Portfolio Manager, Jeff Viksjo.  And Jeff, no question about it, this has been a tough year for investors.  A tough year for anyone who’s looking at the financial markets.  Most portfolios are down, probably, 20%.  Bonds are down, significantly, double digits.  First time in 40-years.  Stocks are also off.  So, in an environment like this, we tend to want look at is there a positive way to, sort of, look at this environment.  And we’ve got a couple charts today, that look at what people say are most meaningful to them. This is from the Pew Research Foundation.  So, let’s take a look at the first chart, what do we see here Jeff?



Tony, as clients are approaching retirement, obviously their number one concern usually is, are they going to have enough money.  But we preach that having a plan for their time after retirement is equally important.  And this survey just asked people, what is the most valuable thing in their life?  And number one, of course, has nothing to do with money.  It about time and time spent with family.


Right.  Now, it’s interesting, you obviously have different viewpoints all over the world.  We’ve got a second chart here, which takes a look at other countries, other parts of the world, other continents, as well as the United States.  And here, we see sort of an interesting dichotomy, because typically, in the United States we’re characterized as people who work too much.  We work a lot, and our identity is with our jobs and what we do.  And yet, when you look at the statistics here, people are telling us quite a different story, aren’t they?



Yeah.  If you look, most countries, occupation is the second most valuable thing, behind family.  In the U.S. it’s all the way down at four.  Friends and Family are above it. So, the question is, is this a post-COVID happening?  Has COVID really impacted people’s views of things?  We’re seeing this, Tony, in the labor force.  You know, the labor force participation is way down.  Are people just saying they’ve had enough and getting out.



Yeah.  So, although you may be looking at your portfolio and not feeling great about it.  If you take a step back and look at what’s really important in life, and what most people are telling us, it tends to be their family and their friends, and then some financial security.  Ultimately, markets do come back, they do rebound, but friends and family tend to be a much longer duration.

So, thank you for joining us for this edition of Chart Talk.  We look forward to seeing you soon.

Submit a comment below!

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *