The New Frugal, Anti-Consumerist Ethic & the Wellness Industry

MONTHLY BAROMETER: It is the younger generation entering the labor market today that will feel the effect of the current crisis for decades to come. Study after study shows that it should expect lower employment rates, lower incomes and greater social problems (including more divorce and more premature deaths). This translates into palpable consequences for businesses and investors. One illustration: Over the past weeks, Chinese…

Post-Pandemic Paradox: Wellness Becomes More Important, but in Less Marketable Ways?

MONTHLY BAROMETER The slow and grinding economic recovery will be characterized by three prominent features. (1) Much more debt, which will trigger redistribution reforms (mainly through higher taxation) similar to those put into place during the Great Depression and WWII when the top marginal tax rate went above 80 percent in several countries like the US. It will also lead to financial repression. (2) Less…

The Growing, Disturbing Connection between Obesity and Air Pollution with COVID-19

There is an intriguing wellbeing twist in COVID-19’s multiple uncertainties. It seems bizarre that Japan, the world’s oldest and fastest-aging society, has so far recorded low rates of infection (13 confirmed cases per 100,000 people) and very low mortality rates (less than 1 per 100,000 people). By contrast and in relative terms, the US (a much younger society than Japan) and the UK fare poorly:…

US under Coronavirus: Only Rich Nation Where Citizens Lose Both Employment & Health Insurance Simultaneously

The pandemic’s severe blow to our collective sense of wellbeing will, of course, be global, but the US seems particularly vulnerable. As of last week, roughly 22 million Americans filed for unemployment. According to a new study by Harvard and City University of New York (published in the prestigious Annals of Internal Medicine), 1.5 million people in the US have already lost their health insurance during…

How to Avoid Work from Home (WFH) Burnout

MONTHLY BAROMETER – WELLNESS EDITION  MONTHLY BAROMETER The pandemic has magnified the macro challenge of social inequalities by laying bare the shocking disparities in the degree of risk to which different social classes are exposed. In much of the world, a pattern has emerged: The wealthiest have escaped to their holiday homes; the middle class hunkers down at home to telework and homeschool; while the…

Post-COVID Futures: From Localism Rising in Travel to an Ongoing Obsession with Cleanliness

A few very simple points to consider regarding the impact of Coronavirus on the wellness industry at large… It will impact the wellness industry proportionately more than many other industries. The reason is the following: A large percentage of economic activity in the wellness industry resides in social forms of consumption, i.e., forms of economic activity that depend on physical and personal (“high-touch”) interactions with…