Local Experts Say Bailout Bill Failure, Drop in Markets Could Hurt Western Colorado

By: Tim Ciesco Email
By: Tim Ciesco Email

Here in the Grand Valley, residents say news of the failed bailout plan and stock market plunge has left them on edge. But just what do they both mean for Western Colorado?

From Wall Street to Main Street -- Grand Valley residents say news Monday from Washington DC and New York is leaving them worried about the state of the economy.

"It's a little scary to know where you're gonna fit in," said Grand Junction resident Monica Salvo. "I'm not sure we do."

But local financial experts say they have an idea.

"Wall Street is disappointed and if Main Street looks at it too, they're going to be disappointed," said Larry Jones, Branch Manager of Financial West Group.

Jones says the longer Congress holds off on a bailout plan, the worse the economy could get. He says it will trickle down to most of the country in the form of a credit crunch, as banks become more weary about loaning money.

"They're not willing to loan money back and forth to each other as well as other corporations," said Jones. "Because of that, payrolls are not going to be met."

He says here in Western Colorado the economy is booming, so we likely won't see those effects as quickly or strongly as other areas. But he adds we're not completely immune from a slumping national economy.

"People are going to have to come up with more substantial down payments to purchase a house, refinance a house, or get home equity loans," said Jones.

Then there's the issue of credit cards.

"It could perhaps lower the limits a person can have on their credit cards," said Jones.

Grand Junction resident Dan Shanahan says he's already feeling the effects of the crisis when it comes to his investments. He says the longer Congress waits, the longer he's left worrying.

"It will continue to eat away at things like my retirement, my 401K, and any investments we have," said Shanahan.

Jones says he understands that investors are worried, but for not it's important to stay the course rather than sell.

"They should be investing to take advantage of this, because long term they will be rewarded," said Jones.

But that's easier said than done for some who say they've lost faith in the financial industry.

"I'm not going to get into anything new at this point because I don't want to take that chance," said Salvo. "I'm trying to be a little cautious."

Now they all look to Washington, hoping something gets done to prevent the good life from going bad.

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