Are the stock indexes an illusion?

Many experts on the economy think the Covid-19 pandemic will be worse for retirement plans than the Great Recession of a dozen years ago. They say don't be fooled by the high-flying stock market.

Michael Smith, president of Houston's STA Wealth Management, expects this to be worse than the Great Recession.

"It's definitely broader in scope; it has a lot more uncertainty that surrounds it and I think the duration is going to be one of several years if not more."

Smith says don't take risks with your portfolio.

"Definitely look through your budget and see what can be cut; it's time to be frugal, downsize if possible."

Smith says if you get a tip on a hot stock, resist the temptation.

"Don't get too greedy -- and that's definitely what's happening; the Fed's keeping these markets propped up and it's easy for people to think 'I'm missing out and I want to start taking risk.'"

In a TD Ameritrade survey, 43% of Americans said they’re still recovering financially from the Great Recession.

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