Suze Orman Says This Is the Biggest Favor You Can Do for Yourself Right Now

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  • There's a reason to believe the economy might take a turn for the worse. 
  • One key move on your part could buy you financial protection in the event of a recession. 
  • Orman recommends prioritizing your emergency savings right now.

It's advice worth listening to.

Like many financial experts, Suze Orman has reason to believe the U.S. economy may be headed for a recession. The Federal Reserve has been aggressively hiking up interest rates in an effort to slow inflation down to a more moderate pace and give consumers some much-needed relief. In doing so, the Fed is making it a lot more expensive to borrow money, whether in the form of taking out a loan or carrying a credit card balance. 

The fear, though, is that expensive borrowing will push consumers to cut back on spending to a drastic degree. And that could be enough to fuel a recession. 

It's for this reason that Orman would advise everyone to focus on building emergency savings right about now. And that's advice worth taking to heart.

The most important thing you can do right now

In a recent Tweet, Orman said "The biggest favor you will do for yourself is to make emergency savings a priority starting right now." She then went on to say "Save. Save some more. And then keep saving."

Now, it may be the case that you already have a fully loaded emergency fund -- which, if you ask Orman, is enough money in savings to cover eight to 12 months' worth of living costs. But many people don't have anywhere close to that level of cash reserves. And if you're in that boat, it pays to listen to Orman and focus on saving money while you can.

Although inflation has been messing with a lot of people's finances, the good thing is that the U.S. economy is still strong, as is the labor market. But you should take advantage of that situation by banking as much of your paycheck as you can every month.

Come next year, we don't know what the economy might have in store. If a recession hits, unemployment could become rampant. And if you lose your job because your employer is forced to downsize, you should know that any unemployment benefits you're eligible for won't be enough to replace your missing paycheck in full. Rather, those benefits will only replace a portion of your lost income. So the more savings you have, the less likely you'll be to fall behind on bills as you look for work.

Pay yourself first

If you're not used to saving money on a monthly basis, you may need to tweak your spending habits to boost your savings. But you should also consider putting the savings process on autopilot.

If you arrange for a portion of each paycheck you receive to land directly in your savings account, you'll remove the temptation to spend it. Of course, you might need to then make spending changes to account for the lower sum of money that will be hitting your checking account. But at least you'll be able to hit your monthly savings target off the bat, and that could end up being a very important thing if your job winds up on the chopping block in 2023.

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