We’re in the midst of unprecedented uncertainty in the financial markets, and consumer confidence is the lowest it’s been in a long time. It seems that no one really knows what’s going to happen. We may be facing a serious recession, or worse; we may just be undergoing a bizarre blip, to be followed by a quick return to business as usual. Either way, here are some ideas about how to handle the uncertainty.

Many economists actually like the occasional recession (up to a point) because it purges the marketplace of marginal players. Some of us spent the last 15 or so boom years coasting on the good times instead of building a durable business. If there’s a chance you’re one of those marginal players, it may be time to do some soul-searching: Do you...

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