Video: How to prepare for the 2020 Recession

An economic downturn is hard for college students to hear, but preparing for it is key

There is a high chance of a market crash this upcoming year. Michael Sanders, the assistant director of the Investment Banking Scholars Program (IBIS) at ASU's W.P. Carey School of Business, gives us a quick lay down of how college students can be more financially prepared for an approaching recession.

Song: Infraction


Michael Sanders: So, I’m Mike Sanders, I am a career coach for our specialized master's program. Currently, I am working with Investment Banking Consulting Scholars and Investment Banking Industry Scholars. There are some indicators, you know, the yield curve which is what the yield for the treasuries are. When the long term treasury yield becomes less appealing than the short term, the yield curve inverts. That happened in August. 

That can sometimes be an indicator of a recession coming. I know new car sales have been down the first half of this year, the federal reserve's cutting rates, so things are slowing down. I think it is important for college students to...graduate with as little debt as possible. And I know that is easier said than done, in this day and age where the cost of college and the time commitments for these programs that are required. And the second thing is to get into your 401(k) as early as you can. 

So, when you do get a job after college and you get into a company that has a 401(k), get into it. And you know often students say, "Well I need a new car, I want to do this, I want to live in the nice part of town,” so they don’t invest in the first five years. And there has been a lot of studies that show the growth of your investments the first five years, that 22 to 27, when a lot of students don’t—“Oh I’ll wait till I’m 30, I’ll wait for a while.” They’re leaving a lot of money on the table. 

The W.P. Carey School of Business does have a finance 380 course and it’s a personal finance course, and they do. They talk about personal finance, they talk about credit, how to start taking out credit as a student, they talk about stocks and bonds and retirement strategies, things like that. It’s a newer course, and it’s a personal finance course. So for college students keep it simple: do your 401(k) and try to get out of college with as little debt as possible.

Reach the reporter at or follow @drakeprestoo on Twitter.

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