Minnesotans and the market drop

MinnEcon Note: MPR’s Mike Caputo has been talking today with Minnesotans in MPR’s Public Insight Network. Here’s what he found

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At least some Minnesotans beat Standard & Poor’s in taking action based on disenchantment with U.S. government action.

As the federal government argued over a deal to raise the nation’s debt ceiling, Todd Graham of St. Paul was already pulling money out of his domestic mutual funds. Graham, a regional economist, said he “sold a large chunk” of the funds on July 26.

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“But it was only about 15 percent of our total household portfolio,” Graham, a source in MPR’s Public Insight Network, wrote. “I should have sold far more.”

Graham was among the sources in Minnesota who responded to a few questions from the MPR through the network about the downgrading of America’s credit by Standard & Poor’s (feel free to click through and answer them yourself).

While Graham wished he had pulled more money out of the stock market, others wonder if the sinking Dow represents an opportunity.

A few weeks ago, Kent Schumacher of Minneapolis rerouted his 401K investments away from stocks. Now he’s thinking about moving that money back into the stock market for some cheap purchases.

“If the economy collapses, money isn’t going to be any less worthless than stocks are,” said Schumacher, an IT manager.

Susan Misgen of New Richland also might take advantage of the stock drop by doing some investing. Misgen, who runs her family business, also played the role of banking adviser last week as the debt crises came to a head.

Misgen said a young customer planned on making a major purchase from her company (she declined to be specific on the type of purchase). She advised him to hold off on making the buy, and instead wait a week and see what happens.

“(He) was laid off for a long time after the 2008 downturn,” Misgen said. “I told him we have to make sure the downturn doesn’t return.”

How have you dealt with personal finances and financial advising during the debt crisis and the downgrade of America’s credit rating? Let MPR know and inform our understanding of what this all means.

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