News Release: Finance and Economics, Teaching

Sep. 16,  2008

Wall Street Meltdown Affects Consumer Behavior, Student Job Prospects

With the biggest drop in the stock market since 9-11, consumers are justifiably worried about the economy, and it's likely to get worse before it gets better, says Goizueta Business School finance expert Tom Smith.

"People get scared about their assets, especially their retirement accounts. It's important to know that the stock market will rebound – we just don't know how long it will take. A lot of the fallout from this depends on how people perceive it and react to it, which in turn will cause how the market reacts," says Smith, an assistant professor in the practice of finance at Goizueta with a specialty in financial economics.

"In addition to what's happening with Wall Street, most of the economic statistics and indicators are revealing that the economic situation is tightening, and signals that we are moving into or about to be in a recession. The worst is yet to come, and people should brace for that," Smith says.

Students Face "Highly Competitive Job Market"

"Many of our students who are actively seeking employment either in a summer internship or full-time position capture the essence of a liberally educated graduate whose opportunities aren't driven by industry trends. These students benefit from unlimited options in multiple sectors where employers are looking for well-rounded, well-educated change-agents who can make a difference in their organizations and businesses," says Paul Fowler, executive director of Emory's Career Center.
 
What is vital now and in the future is to further develop Emory's alumni network, Fowler says. "We have a strong alumni pool that is willing and able to support the career development of our students. Having that network, and building on it, helps to hedge against the downturns we have seen."

For Emory's Goizueta Business School graduates, students are entering a finance job market that, while always competitive, will be fiercely competitive, says Andy Rabitoy, director of the BBA Career Management Center.

"We are encouraging our students to network as much as possible with family, friends, alumni and industry contacts to connect them with opportunities," he says. "Student may not be able to start out on a traditional investment banking path, but we do see promise and opportunities in mid-market and boutique firms."

For more economic news, read Knowledge@Emory.

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