What to do to secure the future? I’ll sleep on it

I M fast coming to the conclusion that these days it is best to be jobless, penniless, homeless and have no shares. Only then are you likely to be able to sleep peacefully at night. It used to be that anyone in the predicament described above would be reg

I'M fast coming to the conclusion that these days it is best to be jobless, penniless, homeless and have no shares.

Only then are you likely to be able to sleep peacefully at night.

It used to be that anyone in the predicament described above would be regarded as one of life's unfortunates. But less so now, I suspect.

The global economic crisis or credit crunch - choose either, they amount to about the same thing - has taken over big time from global warming as the thing which frightens the pants off us.


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Look at what the pessimists warn could happen to us. Are our jobs safe? No way, not any more in the crazy world in which we find ourselves with businesses cutting back or going broke all over the place.

Surely our savings are safe. It is certainly not certain if lured by the promise of high interest rates you have bunged your hard-earned cash into the coffers of Iceland banks where (I can't resist it) assets have been frozen.

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And in this country there are mounting mutterings of doubt over the ability of home-grown banks to safeguard our savings.

In desperation, the banks have been beseeching the Government to bail them out by pumping billions of pounds into the institutions - that's our money, the taxpayers - but what happens to the cash (ours, remember) if the plan does not work?

Will Chancellor Alistair be the darling of the financial world riding to the rescue or will he fall off his charger leading to a charge on all our accounts? Is that once economics whizz Gordon getting browned off by this?

And if we are left with no job and no money, the forfeiture of our mortgaged-up-to-the-hilt homes will surely quickly follow. We won't be able to rely on flogging off our shares to pull us out of trouble, the value of those are fast going down the plug hole.

So there we are, it's all doom and gloom - but is it? A possible solution to our money worries surfaced in the results of a survey released this week. It could lead to a major run on the banks a la Northern Rock-style, and it is so obvious.

One third of all women and a quarter of men questioned said they felt their savings would be safer in or under a mattress than in a bank or building society.

Perhaps a little surprisingly, more than 40 per cent of 16 to 24-year-olds said they favoured a "bed for their bread".

But it came as no surprise to learn that more than half of the canny Scots said they preferred mattress money.

Myself, I'm thinking hard about it but I do have in mind that my wife has been going on for a while about us investing in a new bed. I hope she does not find the piles of pennies too lumpy.

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