Is the Stock Market Too High to Invest?

Usually when I talk about investment mistakes, I refer to what is known as the “greed, hope, and fear” cycle. This is the well-known tendency of investors to invest more aggressively when the stock market is doing well, hope it will come back when the market begins its inevitable downturn, and then eventually sell near the bottom out of sell fear. Investors are then typically reluctant to get back in until things “settle down,” which means when the market has gone up for an extended period of time and is possibly nearing another high point. This causes investors to buy high and sell low, the opposite of what you want to do.    Read more

The Stock Market’s Going to Go Down…Unless it Goes Up

A question I get asked a lot lately is what I think the stock market is going to do. We are near (or at, depending on when you read this) all time highs in the stock market. 401k balances are rising. Stock prices have risen pretty quickly. A client company of ours has seen its stock rise from $40 to $56 per share in the last several months. Things look great and when I turn on the financial networks, many of the “experts” are predicting a strong market for the next several years. And, that scares people…. Read more

When It Comes to Investing, Don’t Just Follow the Money

This week, USA Today came out with an article on how more money poured into stock mutual funds in the last week than any other week in the last eleven years.  Now at first glance that may come as good news as investor confidence seems to be returning in the wake of a resolution to the fiscal cliff dilemma, but before you jump on the stock market bandwagon, remember the words of renowned investor Warren Buffett.  When asked about his philosophy on investing, he is known to have said he is greedy when others are fearful, and fearful when others are greedy.  In other words, Warren Buffett, one of the greatest investors of all time, has a tendency to go against the flow when it comes to investment decisions. Read more

The “Secret Sauce” Behind Successful Investing

Much to the chagrin of dentists everywhere, Tootsie Roll has been a staple of the candy business for a very long time.  This article talks about the Tootsie Roll Company being a very secretive organization. (And we thought it was just the CIA that operates in relative secrecy)!  Tootsie Roll doesn’t give tours, they don’t give interviews to analysts and they don’t operate with much transparency. It’s as if they have some magical mystery formulas that they don’t want the rest of us to know.  Read more

Why Didn’t I Sell?

“Why didn’t I sell before the market dropped?”  is a question I got from a caller to our helpline last week.  This is a common question, as you can imagine, after a big drop in the market or during an extended bear market.  This caller was extremely frustrated because he was stuck between a rock and a hard place.  He had already turned in his paperwork to retire within the month (too late to cancel) and was making a transfer from his 401(k) to a pension purchase to provide additional fixed income – essentially changing the goal of this money from long term growth to income.  The market drop would lower his monthly income for the rest of his life because his lump sum was being used to calculate his monthly income payment.  He was distraught. Read more

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