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Old 05-12-2008, 04:55 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Lightbulb A drastic change from people born before 1985 compared to people born after 1985...

I'm seeing an interesting trend lately.

Most people I know that are slightly older than me (pre 1985) here in Canada bought the $250K 'starter' home, drive their new cars, and spend like it's going out of style. AKA: breaking out the credit cards.

Conversely, most people I meet that are a little younger at me have never owned a car and don't intend to! They're quite happy shacking up with 3 other friends in a 2 bedroom apartment and paying $165/month in rent each. They generally party in less expensive ways and are content getting by with the basics.

All this change just within a few years of birth dates. Oddly this changeover is almost precisely when children are born with parents that were not part of the baby-boom (I was born in '85 and my dad was born in '60).

The thing that has me concerned is that when our 'new generation' displaces the 'baby boomer' workforce, what on earth is going to happen?!? I mean we're suddenly going to go from selling big screen TVs, people packed in expensive restaurants, soaring home sales (at least in Canada) to an economy where bachelor apartments are the in thing, no one is planning to have children anymore, and toilet paper and pasta sauce are the major household purchases? Yikes!

How do you people feel about this? Are you seeing this trend too? What a bizarre circumstance.


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Old 05-12-2008, 05:14 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Peakster -

I don't think 1985 is the end of the baby-boomers. I thought it officially ended in the mid 1960's :

Baby boomer
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baby_Boomers
Quote:
is a North American-English term used to describe a person who was born between 1946 and 1964. Following World War II, these countries experienced an unusual spike in birth rates, a phenomenon commonly known as the baby boom. The term is iconic and more properly capitalized as Baby Boomers. The terms "baby boomer" and "baby boom" along with others (e.g., "goomies" or "goomers") are also used in countries with demographics that did not mirror the sustained growth in American families over the same interval.
I have to think about the rest. Off the top of my head, this sounds like a different form of the X-generation phenomena, where the next generation can't succeed economically and have to return home to their parents. The alternative to not going back home would be to live with same-gens. The times just ain't what they used to be.

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Old 05-12-2008, 05:15 PM   #3 (permalink)
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I think it's just a cohort effect. Few pre 1985 can affort a $250k house and brand new cars. Wait a couple years till they make decent salaries and you'll see how many of them are still "shacking up with 3 other friends in a 2 bedroom apartment".
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Old 05-12-2008, 05:15 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Nope, I think you're just seeing folks with different priorities and concerns at different stages in their lives as well as cultural cycles. I'm a child of baby boomers (albeit early ones). When I was 18 I could have lived on Ramen and in a tent. Now, um, not so much.
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Old 05-12-2008, 06:02 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cfg83 View Post
Peakster -

I don't think 1985 is the end of the baby-boomers.
CarloSW2
Oh whoops. I guess I worded it wrong in the first post I meant that 1985 would be the last year where a child was born with parents from the baby boom (aka: if a 25-year old man had a child in 1986, he would have been born in 1961, thus not part of the baby boom of the 50s.
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Old 05-12-2008, 09:13 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Being born in 1985, I fall right between the cracks of your post since you only mention before and after :-P

I have go say though, plenty of my friends are being the good American and spending like crazy. Me? I'm taking heed from my grandfather's generation and being more fiscally responsible. If he made it through the depression as a teenager, I can make it through this tiny economic down-turn using some of the same tactics and attitudes.
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Old 05-12-2008, 11:08 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I'm a '77 kiddo from older parents (now near their 70's). I'm usually classified as "X+1".

Even in my gen +/- 3 yrs, spending can either be observed as frugal or rampant -- this is just observations of friends and family acquaintances.

I do see younger folks spending more, on the average.

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Old 05-12-2008, 11:11 PM   #8 (permalink)
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you're in about the same boat as me. I was born in 76 and when I was in high school, when Gen x was being defined, I was a year below the cutoff.....

Most everyone of my friends has had quite a materialist streak in them. Maybe it was that growing up in the 80's thing.
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Old 05-13-2008, 10:31 AM   #9 (permalink)
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I think it's just the cycle. I'm an old coot born in the 60's. When I was young I lived 4 people in a house and drove an old F150 pickup. When I got older, got money, bought things realized that it really does not change things and now I'm down sizing and giving things away and still live 4 people(kids) in a house. It just's the way human nature is which some don't grow out of but I don't think you can pin point that accurately. Your mileage may very (YMMV)
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Old 05-13-2008, 12:24 PM   #10 (permalink)
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there are generational differences and most of those differences come from the generation that raised them.. Cause and effect.. Just part of the generational differences.. took 3 hours of classes recently on generational differences. Its quite interesting how generations shape the next..

Boomer's grew up with parents that were typically more frugal and prepaired and debt free, had large families.. boomer's are loaded with debt, don't prepair to heavily, and think about them selfs more. Kind of opposed of there raised childhoods..

And the kids boomer's raised, don't trust older generations as they felt "jipped" from the boomer's all there life, they were the first generation to have latch key kids, parrents going on vacion with out kids, and both parents working full time, and there boomer elders were always about them selfs .. thus the distrust..

However there are melding points and anomalies along the way so you mileage may very..

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