Gen-X most likely to suffer from credit crunch, baby boomers will do best

The baby boomers are the generation best prepared to survive the economic downturn while Generation-X are the most likely to suffer, according to KPMG partner and demographer Bernard Salt.

The baby boomers are the generation best prepared to survive the economic downturn while Generation-X are the most likely to suffer, according to KPMG partner and demographer Bernard Salt.

Salt says those aged over 50 will likely be prepared to handle “potentially the greatest global catastrophe in 80 years”.

“The baby boomers are in their 50s and over and have made their mark; hopefully paid off their house, been successful, put money into superannuation and should be the best geared of all of the generations.

“In many respects they’ll use the recession as a break point to make the transition from work into pre-retirement and allow Generation-X to carry us through this period,” he says in a Sensis podcast.

Salt says Generation-X, now in their 30s through early 40s, have the most to lose.

The generation “has moved from a dual income back to one income, they have a mortgage, one or two kids – what they want is a decade of prosperity ahead of them”.

Writing in The Australian Salt says: “There is no room to manoeuvre for Generation-X; all the bases are loaded… [they] will, along with CEOs, lie awake reviewing their options under different recession scenarios.”

But Salt says Generation-Y, in their early 20s, will remain mostly unaffected.

“Generation-Y are not married, they don’t have children, often no mortgage – they’re not too worried about their career and they’ll continue to spend every cent they can earn.

“They live at home with mum and dad and if they lose their job they’ll probably just stay at home and watch mum and dad’s plasma until another job presents itself,” he says.

But Salt says good times are ahead. “Survive 2009 and the years beyond should deliver a prosperous business idyll that is far less cluttered with the noise of slow-moving and slow-witted competitors.”

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