Stocks

Can’t Trust the Stock Market?

If you keep your life savings in certificates of deposit or a savings account at your local bank, that decision may be based on a common belief about finances, known as a money script: “You can’t trust the stock market.” This belief about money can keep you from making the most of your retirement savings.

How to Get a Decent Return

What kind of a portfolio return can you reasonably hope for? My goal, as an advisor, is to average 8.5% yearly. While no return is guaranteed, how can an investor reasonably hope to attain that performance?

Ebola, Fear and Market Timing

The West African Ebola outbreak this summer generated fear and anxiety, particularly when two infected American aid volunteers were treated at Atlanta’s Emory University Hospital. What does Ebola have to do with your personal investment policy and meeting your goals? Plenty: It provides a useful lesson in the psychology of fear.

How to Increase Your Wealth

As the old adage says, “It takes money to make money.” You don’t have to be wealthy to invest, but you have to invest to be wealthier.

Volatility Antidote: Sangfroid

Volatility, which measures how stock prices jump around, is relatively low lately. But depend on this: It will surge again, once the market goes through turmoil. We are overdue for that. There is only way to survive the next bout of volatility – with cold blood.

The French call this quality sangfroid. Unless you need to cash in your stocks for some reason, like retirement, don’t let these gyrations faze you. Let’s explain why this makes sense.

Rising Stocks = Trouble? Nope

Times are good in the stock market. Maybe too good. So expect trouble. That’s the bears’ argument. Don’t buy it.

Indeed, a 10% correction could come at any time, as we haven't seen one for almost three years. A 10% correction, or perhaps more, takes place during a healthy bull market about once every 15 months.

Recently, the bears have even talked about a 20% downturn, which would qualify as a true bear market. Some are even suggesting that a 50% downturn is possible. While almost anything is possible, the question is what is the probability?

Is the Market Overvalued?

You keep hearing that, because stock market valuations are so high lately, that a downturn is imminent. But this is not necessarily the case. The often-used P/E ratio, which measures valuations and now is on the high side, is not always the best market bellwether.

It’s likely you’ve seen some version of this headline, and wondered what truth it holds:  “Stock Market’s High Suggests Lower Returns AheadForbes, June 18.

Amid Chaos, Invest for Income

Fighting again in the Middle East, oil prices and Wall Street volatile and apparently you need life insurance to fly certain airlines: In what seem scary times to invest, how do you cut through the clutter of panicky, short-term and just plain bad money strategies?

Everyone wants a strategy that builds confidence about investing – especially when everyone seems to be holding their breath. My answer: income investing, a way to generate consistent cash flow from your liquid investments.

Bargains Amid Downturns

Periodic dips in the stock market grab investors’ attention and fuel anxiety. Here’s why long-term investors should not worry, and instead see opportunity. Market downturns are times to buy good bargain stocks.

Think back to early March 2009, the low point after the crash. America was on sale. If you bought stocks then, when they were cheap, you more than doubled your money as of now.

Winning by Losing Less

To reach your financial goals, you don’t have to outperform every benchmark every year. For long-term investors, avoiding and mitigating losses is a key factor in achieving ultimate success in your portfolio.

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