I had all good intentions of writing this blog on Fathers Day. From time to time, I’ll hear an interviewer ask the question “if you could spend one hour with anyone from the past, who would it be?” The answer ranges from George Washington to Thomas Edison to John F Kennedy. For myself, I don’t need even one second to supply the name: My Dad, Stuart Nordstrom.
He died in 1983, four years after starting Creative Nail Design. That year we did $250K in sales. He shared with me in a private conversation shortly before his death that the family had started something special that would become a big success. So, in that hour I would share with him the amazing story of success that unfolded in the years after he departed us. The people I have met from all over the world. The victories, trials and tribulations that we encountered along the way. How Creative served as a vehicle for my Mom to survive and move on after his departure. How our company would touch the lives of so many People in so many good ways. It would be an hour for a lifetime. That is what I thought about on Fathers Day.
There is a major and subtle shift underway in the world economy that will have profound effects on all, but in particular, our USA. For many decades, the US Dollar has been the world “reserve currency”. In short, when you conduct trade around the world, the selling and buying countries price the good or service being traded in US Dollars. The foundation of this arrangement was Saudi Arabia’s agreement to price all of its oil sales in the US currency many decades ago. Fast forward to the year 2014 and the Dollar’s status is undergoing a quiet, but quite powerful shift towards losing that status. It is being driven by China and Russia with support from Iran, The Saudi’s and some South American countries.
The largest recent example was a $400 Billion deal between China and Russia where Russia will supply a large amount of natural gas to China. The size of the deal was a bit staggering. However, the bigger headline to me is it was priced in Rubles and Yaun…no Dollars involved. I believe very few Americans are aware of this trend. Its implications are enormous though. Up until now, since we have been the undisputed reserve currency, we have created an unlimited amount of new currency units in the form of debt. As we are slowly removed from reserve status, our ability to repay that debt will come into greater scrutiny and higher interest rates will most likely follow. Joined to that, inflation could become a major plague on our economy. This will hit the average American the hardest in that it will cost far more to buy the same amount of lifestyle. The average household income has already been lagging in a low inflation environment. High inflation will be quite difficult. Sadly, the political elite along with the financial community will fare, as they have been, just fine. Educate yourself on this, it will help you survive a difficult transition that is under way.
I am so lucky to be writing this from the back terrace at Villa D’ Este…it is a sunny day and Lake Como looks even more magical, if that is possible. It has to be one of the top three most beautiful places I have ever been. We are here with the Kids and it’s a real blessing to be able to share it with them. Linda and I started our trip last weekend in Liverpool, England and attended The Open (or as we Americans call it The British Open). We stayed with some very special friends who hosted a non-stop fun zone that included walking a round of local golf on the day we arrived (the best jet lag remedy I have found yet!); two days at The Open (and we were in walking distance of the course) and a memorable dinner in Liverpool followed by visiting every dive bar on Mathews Street, where The Beetles begin their storied careers. We are forever indebted to our Liverpool buddies and look forward to returning the hospitality in Las Vegas!
Next was Vienna, Austria where the kids joined us. We really enjoyed it…it is a full but small city with tons of history, nice and happy people, who enjoy having a two or three hour coffee with friends. We were surprised at how quiet it was…everyone leaves the city for holidays in the beach areas during the summer months. Everyone said winter is when Vienna is most alive. One of the highlights was a wine country tour outside of Vienna combined with a one hour ride on the Danube river, it was so fun and relaxing!
Before I sign off, I want to mention a new service that is being offered by a person I am proud to call a friend, Doug Schoon. More than anyone I know, he has contributed more good to our professional beauty industry. Most of it without compensation. To say he embodies what our industry stands for is an understatement. His new Face to Face program details can be found at this link: facetofacewithdougschoon.com It is a bargain for a wealth of material and I hope you give it a try. Secondly, on behalf of Linda and myself, I want to thank all of the nail professionals who have tried and enthusiastically supported famous Names new IBX system and our international team of distributors, who have done a simply amazing job of educating and promoting IBX. We are overwhelmed and grateful…
Until the next time