Youth Soccer and the Economy - An OTP Series
For a number of months now, it’s been clear that the US economy is in major trouble. The past couple weeks have simply confirmed what many already suspected:
- The economy has lost almost two million jobs this year.
- The stock market has declined over 50% since it’s peak, though it has recovered slightly.
- The NABE officially declared that the US Economy has been in a recession – since December 2007.
- Factory orders declined 5% and durable orders declined 6.2% in October. The third straight month of declines.
- Foreclosures soared 76% in the 3rd quarter with 1.35 million homes in foreclosure.
- The economic downturn is affecting areas across the country.
- Economists are getting nervous about how long this may last.
This means families are spending less, and often have less to spend. While some families are weathering the storm, others are in severe distress and many are in between. While everyone hopes the downturn will be short, there are many economists who believe this could extend well into 2009 and beyond. That could be a relief, as it wasn’t too long ago when Japan’s economy was stuck in neutral for over a decade. So with American families cutting back, what does this mean for youth soccer?
It’s often said that one of the problems with youth soccer in America is the expense. This generally applies to competitive travel teams, which can cost hundreds to thousands of dollars a year per player. But with an economic downturn this severe, even inexpensive Recreation programs will likely feel the impacts.
Over the next few weeks, we’ll be publishing a four part series called Youth Soccer and the Economy. This downturn will affect a lot of people in a lot of ways, but even within the limited scope of youth soccer, this downturn will certainly impact a number of people and organizations in a number of ways. We’ll be focusing on a specific area of youth soccer in each article, which hopefully will spur discussion on how parents, coaches, and administrators can best weather the storm.
As the articles are published, we’ll link to them below