It may be too late for me to write about the financial crisis, and its impact to Shanghai (I tried hard to avoid to use too big terms like China – basically, I only know a very small portion of the city of Shanghai, not to mention about China).
Shanghai IS Impacted
Despite of many claims that China is fine so far, I clearly feel the arrival of winter, or at least approaching of financial winter.
Taking Wendy and I as an example, although we are not directly impacted, the sentiment of being more conservative surely impacted us. We have canceled almost all the movie expense, and cut our dining out to once every week (before, it was once once every day or twice per day).
For layoffs, recently, I started to see signs like this. The winter has clearly impacted some higher risk companies, like Internet companies. It is not surprising to know friends leaving their company, and I feel very bad about it, and also, it is almost inevitable in this environment.
Role of Controlled Media
It is interesting to see the role of media in financial crisis. If you open all the major newspapers, and websites, the theme of all the news is: We face challenges, but everything is still fine, and at least it will be fine. For the majority of people who rely on the limited source of information, they are more optimistic than they should be, and ironically, this is a good thing in this era. The current economy is all about confidence. If majority of people are still confident (or blindly confident) about future, maybe the situation won’t go as worse as it should be. In the US crisis, I am sure Internet plays an important role, that everyone knows the bad news, almost at the same time.
I will still keep an eye about what is happening here in Shanghai, and if you have any specific questions about what the real situation is, feel free to ask me, and the questions help me to observe what is happening around me better.