[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/images/09/18/art.ny.papers.gi.jpg caption="The financial crisis is worsening on a daily basis."]
FROM CNN's Jack Cafferty:
If you think the fallout from the crisis in the financial system is barely touching your life, think again.
The Dow, Nasdaq and S&P 500 are all down around 20 percent so far this year which means whether or not you've had the stomach to look at a statement, your 401(k) Is getting hit hard.
Thinking of taking your money out of the market and using it to buy a home instead? Besides the risk of selling stocks at a loss, banks are tightening lending standards making it tougher to get mortgages. And that's not just for people with bad credit.
Using your credit cards to get by until things start to clear up isn't such a great option either. Miss a payment and expect to get whacked by your credit card company. USA Today points to penalty rates as high at 32 percent.
Finally all those hundreds of billions in government loans and bailouts for AIG, Fannie Mae-Freddie Mac, Bear Stearns and the like is money you and I, the taxpayers, are on the hook for as well.
Here’s my question to you: How is the deepening financial crisis affecting you?
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Our credit cards went over the limit last month and the credit card company raised our interest rates very high. We are trying to get a second card to close out that credit card but that is proving very difficult even though our credit is very good. This is terrible for us.
Samuel from Orlando, Florida writes:
Jack, it's affecting me through my small business. Even with a good business idea and good personal credit, it's hard to get a bank to take a chance on a start-up. Something has got to change.
Martin from Georgia writes:
I am very worried because I think the worst may still come.
Audrey from Garland, Texas writes:
When George W. Bush took office, a certain stock I own was selling at $42 per share. Today, that same stock, which I still own, closed at 33 cents a share. Need I say more?
Rob from Virginia writes:
It’s not. I don’t live beyond my means, and I have a cash stash.
How has this financial crisis affected me? This old conservative Republican is going to vote for Barack Obama. That is how much this has affected me.
Well, I'm cutting back on everything I don't absolutely have to have. Like cable. So you tell me.