When all you hear about is market crashes, a global pandemic, and political uncertainty, it’s normal to start asking questions like, “Am I going to be okay?” and “How will this affect me?"
And more often than not, our questions turn to financial matters: “Will my portfolio recover?” and “Will I lose income?”
While the severity of these events is not to be minimized, we can battle fear and anxiety by educating ourselves with the facts, not only with what the headlines are declaring. With the recent volatility in mind, here are 4 things to keep in mind when it comes to your finances.
1. Keep A Level Head
Times of uncertainty are not ideal for making drastic changes or decisions. In today’s digital world, we have 24/7 access to news media outlets, and there are a lot of them. With so many different voices fighting for our attention, headlines are getting more and more alarmist. We are constantly bombarded with articles and videos telling us what we need to do based on the last hour’s market performance.
That’s why one of the worst things you can do in a volatile market is let your emotions drive your actions. Volatile times call for a logical outlook. Remember: The numbers you see in your account are just that—numbers. They don’t mean anything unless you sell. Don’t let fear get the best of you. This brings me to my second point.
2. Consider Long-Term Results
Instead, stick to your long-term perspective. The market might be down tomorrow and it might be down a month from now. But if you needed your money tomorrow or a month from now, you wouldn’t have invested it in the stock market. Stock market investing is for the long term, so you shouldn’t let short-term volatility scare you. Volatility and market drops will only hurt you if you panic sell when the market is down and lock in those losses.
History shows us that about every four years the markets post negative annual returns. In spite of that, the S&P 500 Index has averaged gains of 12% from 1979 to 2019. (1) Here is a graph that shows this long-term stability, despite short-term market fluctuations. This is the Dow Jones Industrial Average (DJIA) showing over the last 30 years of investment value, which is a fair representation of the market as a whole if you are an average investor.
If you remember the 2008/2009 crash, as seen above, the market recovered well. The market always recovers, and it will continue to do so.
3. Hands Off
If we take the information we know from the above two points, what’s going to happen if we ride out the waves of the stock market going up and down and keep investing consistently? We will experience growth, work toward financial security, and save ourselves a lot of stress when future downturns come.
When the stock markets go down, you can think of it like a Black Friday or Cyber Monday Sale, where stocks and mutual funds are on sale and you’re getting the best deal on your money. However, if you choose to sell back your funds, or sticking with our example, return a previous purchase you bought for full price, you will get a fraction of your money back. You’ll lose money.
If you consistently invest and don’t take any money out until retirement, you have nothing to be concerned about. Don’t become frantic and start selling back everything you bought for a much higher price. Let it grow and mature.
4. Talk To A Professional About Risk
This is not the time to go it alone. It’s extremely beneficial to talk with someone who has been through these situations before and can help answer concerns specific to your needs and phase of life.
Depending on your age and financial situation, you might not feel like you have as much time to let the market bounce back. This is why it is even more crucial to make sure the types of investments you have align with your risk tolerance. Are you ready to see all your options for protecting your money and build a foundation that can lead to success in any market?We at T.A. Holland & Co. are here for you. Schedule a phone or virtual introductory meeting by contacting us at email@example.com or 617-523-5656.
About T.A. Holland & Co.
T.A. Holland & Co. was founded in Boston, Massachusetts, in 1920 and serves individuals and businesses throughout the country with their financial needs. We provide cutting-edge financial services with a broad array of solutions to help our clients grow and preserve their wealth. We have seen good and bad economic times. Throughout it all, T.A. Holland & Co. has thrived by always making the customer our number-one priority. We get to know you and understand your needs so we can provide you with the proper guidance and strategies. Our senior vice president, John Hellmuth, has been at the helm of T.A. Holland’s financial services since 1990, but he doesn’t do this job alone. He is joined by his two children, Lindsay Hellmuth and Thomas Hellmuth. As CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER® (CFP®) practitioners, our financial services team has the knowledge and experience to help you solve your most pressing financial challenges. To learn more about how we can help you, visit our website and reach out to us to schedule a complimentary get-acquainted meeting.
The views stated in this letter are not necessarily the opinion of Cetera Advisor Networks LLC and should not be construed directly or indirectly as an offer to buy or sell any securities mentioned herein. Due to volatility within the markets mentioned, opinions are subject to change with or without notice. Information is based on sources believed to be reliable; however, their accuracy or completeness cannot be guaranteed. Past performance does not guarantee future results. Investors cannot invest directly in indexes. The performance of any index is not indicative of the performance of any investment and does not take into account the effects of inflation and the fees and expenses associated with investing.