How does another year fly by so quickly? 2012 was a great year; and with an effort to keep things light, instead of talking about the top newsmakers of the year, I thought I’d list a few things everyone can be thankful for.
- The average debt on a household is down. Since the recession of 2008, people all over the world have felt the pinch of debt, and the crushing weight that is the economy. Average households were feeling the crunch on their home mortgages, credits, loans, and student debts. In 2012, it was the first year that North America saw a noticeable increase in minimizing and paying off the debts.
- Technology. How could I resist? Come on! 2012 was a crazy and busy year for most people. For me personally, my iPhone was 99 per cent of what kept me sane. Between telling where to be at all times, and dictating what work was due when, I am grateful for the technological advancements that happened in 2012. That includes you, Microsoft Surface.
- Businesses aren’t firing people. The job market has been underwhelming in the economic recovery that officially began more than three years ago, and unemployment remains high at 7.9 per cent. But there is some hidden good news in the jobs numbers. While businesses aren’t adding new workers at a pace that would put the hordes of unemployed back on the job very rapidly, they also aren’t slashing jobs at a very rapid clip. It is a sign that even though employers aren’t adding jobs in large numbers, they also are reasonably happy with the workers they have and are not dismissing workers in unusually large numbers. It’s a good time if you already have a job. (via Washington Post)
- Housing is dramatically more affordable. People often speak as if higher home prices are an unambiguously good thing, but that can be misleading. Sure, a retiree looking to sell off a large house and live in a small condo instead benefits from high home prices. But most everyone else is either better off when buying a home is more affordable rather than less. Add it all up, and in the spring of 2012 that median American house would require a mortgage payment of only $889 a month, which is 26 per cent of the average private sector employee’s pay. For workers just starting out, young families, or those looking to buy a bigger place, that is hard to beat. (via Washington Post)
- The world didn’t end. Despite the Mayan calendar and the phenomenon that the world was going to end on Dec. 21, 2012, I’m still able to write and publish this article. So take that, Mayan calendar!
2012 was a great year. A large highlight of mine is your continued support in everything I do–be it viewing my work on television, reading my thoughts on Twitter, or dealing with my plethora of hashtags on Instagram.
Thanks for your continued support, and I look forward to sharing many more moments in 2013.
Happy New Year!