Just when you think you have things figured out, the world changes.
As investors, we get excited when the markets rise and fearful when they fall. The world is always happy to give us advice. At SFS, our goal is to identify the truth in the cacophony of headlines so we can implement strategies to help you navigate a changing world.
We may be tempted to believe that if we work hard enough, we can predict what will happen. This is not true. The stock market seems to move in the direction that surprises the greatest number of people. Just when investors think they know, the world changes.
Following rules can help us avoid many investment mistakes. Over long periods of time (10+ years), the U.S. markets have almost always been positive. Implementing this rule means this: stay invested.
Warren Buffett described the stock market as a mechanism that transfers money “from the impatient to the patient.” You will feel more patient in difficult times if you have a customized financial plan with your goals and a plan of action.
Volatility is normal. The ups and downs are a part of investing, but they are exactly what leads to poor decisions. Combat this tendency with diversification and risk management.
In theory, good diversification should mean that a portion of your portfolios is making money. In reality, there is no guarantee, but diversification still helps.
Measuring risk begins by accurately determining how much risk you can and should take. Take too much and there is no way you can make good decisions in the storm. Take too little and you won’t reach your goals. Oscillate back and forth between the two, and you are likely moving backwards.
Our advisors at SFS can help you know how much risk is appropriate for you, and we can get you in a portfolio to match that need.
These are just a couple of my rules that help me maintain successful strategies in a world of endless opportunity and obfuscation. We blend all the rules with the economic realities we see in order to give you the best advice and portfolios that we can.
*Research by SFS. Investing involves risk, including the potential loss of principal. S&P 500 time period chosen to display a sample of the timing of government actions. The S&P 500 is an index often used to represent the U.S. stock market. One cannot invest directly in an index. Past performance does not guarantee future results. The opinions and forecasts expressed are those of the author and may not actually come to pass.