#StockMarket #investing #BullMarket #MarketPredictions
Of late, the stock market has been, shall we say, volatile.
A decade ago was a big-time bust. The years hence have seen a boon.
Will that boon, soon, become a swoon?
The predictors have started to come out.
In an article for The New York Times, Alex Williams sites five popular doom-and-gloom scenarios, or situations, including the student debt problem, the situation with China, the end of easy money, Italy’s possible exit from the European Union and an anti-billionaire uprising across America.
Williams’ article was also published in the Dec. 23, 2018, edition of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Meanwhile Dr. Steve Sjuggerud, who says he’s had an extensive Wall Street career, says, “We are in the final stages of a massive bull market. And the biggest gains lie ahead.” His predictions were published by The Tennessean in Nashville Jan. 27, 2019.
His theory is that just before bull markets end, there’s a big run-up in stocks because people who listen to other doom-and-gloom predictions get out too early, leaving enough cash floating around to find bargains and profit.
Warning: investors should not panic over the impending end of the bull market. Markets go up and go down. Prices go up and come back down. A prudent investor has a strong plan, and stays with it.
What is a strong plan? It’s investing prudent amounts of money in a variety of vehicles. Some of those vehicles are designed for growth – in other words, you buy them at a fairly low price anticipating their value to become apparent to the market, and they rise in price.
Then, as the price goes up, you see a good number and sell enough shares to get your cost back, and let the rest continue to grow. That’s called playing with the house’s money.
But, a good plan also has vehicles that produce income, in the form of dividends, interest etc. Even if the share price of these vehicles drops suddenly, the dividends and interest keep coming. So, you have the comfort of letting their value ride out the downturn as your income keeps coming in. Of course, you need to watch whether the dividends and interest stay constant, or start to drop. If they drop, it may be time to cut your losses.
The point here is that a good plan can weather the ups and downs of the market. Sure, if the market drops, the overall value of one’s portfolio will drop with it. But that should not deter your strategy.
There are also scenarios in which you may decide that a stock, or other investment, isn’t doing what you thought it would. So you sell it to raise cash to use to find bargains in a down market.
If all this seems complicated, find a trusted adviser who can guide you through market ups and downs, and let him or her give you advice.
Don’t really have enough income to invest in stocks? There are many ways out there to pick up extra money by devoting a few part-time hours a week that doesn’t involve what you might see as a “second job,” and aren’t dependent on the markets. To check out one of the best such vehicles, message me.
Recessions, market downturns etc. hurt. They don’t have to devastate you financially. Prudence and balance in your investments, and staying with your plan regardless of market gyrations, is the key. Markets may not go up in a straight line, but, over time, they most always go up.


#investors #stockmarket #socialproblems #purposeoriented
It’s tough to love the stock market with the volatility we’ve seen in recent weeks.
Certainly, both the market and the government have tarnished reputations, as New York Times columnist David Brooks recently pointed out.
But there are a few big-money types who have tried to use the market to solve social problems. Brooks writes that these investors have opposable minds. They are part profit-oriented – nothing is done in the markets without someone making money – and part purpose-oriented.
These investors have created organizations that look a little like businesses, a little like a social-service providers and a little like charities – or some mixture of the three, Brooks writes. His column was published in July 2015 in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution.
Ben & Jerry’s ice cream led the first wave in this sector, Brooks says, but now you’ve got a burgeoning array of social-capitalist tools to address problems. They range from B Corporations like Warby Parker, which gives free glasses to the poor, to social impact bonds, Brooks writes.
Brooks cites a phenomenon is called impact investing, which seeks out companies that are intentionally designed to both make a profit and provide a measurable and accountable social good.
We all would like to put our hard-earned savings into companies that do good. But as a small saver, or one who is diligently saving a small portion of what he or she earns toward retirement, one has to focus on getting the most growth and income from his contributions.
For these folks, gyrations in the market, like the ones we’ve seen recently, cause great consternation. But most experts in the field would advise them not to panic. Usually, what goes down goes back up, as we have seen. You see, those with some cushion in their accounts, and with good advisers, will have raised cash by selling some of the underperforming investments, so they can use that cash to buy some great stocks cheaply when the overall market tumbles.
Remember that when the market reacts this way, an individual stock is just following the market. It does not mean the companies, or their products, are no good. Those good companies will come back because investors see discount shopping opportunities in tumbling markets.
So, if you are small, careful investor, who has put his or her money into good companies or good funds, relax. When the market drops, it’s usually a temporary glitch. Stick to your original plan, and follow the advice of the person you trust. If it helps, don’t watch the news – at least the parts about how the market is doing. If you know that your savings and investment plans are well-thought-out, cringe if you must at what’s going on, but breathe easily.
Someday, you may have enough money to make a real impact on a global problem. For now, though, secure your own nest egg little by little, and don’t let the market gyrations get you down.
Of course, there are many other worthwhile things you can do to enhance your wealth. For one of the best, visit If you are thinking of getting a second, part-time job to throw a little bit more toward your retirement, think a little outside the box. You just might find a way to better utilize any free time you would devote to a second job, and have a lot more fun than a second job would be.
It’s a marvelous thing that some smart, rich folks are looking for ways to solve the globe’s problems with their own money. We all may wish to be in that situation, but, for those who are not rich, it’s best to work on enhancing your own wealth FIRST, and help others do the same.
When, and only when, you’ve done that, by all means feel free to make an impact on the world. Work hard, play hard, save and invest hard. Help others, and you will be enriched. Once enriched, keep helping others. It will bring you great joy.

#retirement bust YOU THOUGHT YOU WERE ALL SET, BUT …

History may judge the years 2007 to 2012, give or take a few years on either end, as the retirement bust years.
People not only lost jobs just before they were about to retire, but also their pensions shrank.
People who thought they were all set for retirement, with a nice, promised pension, got a rude awakening. The monthly benefit on their retirement documentation shrunk considerably.
It was a combination of the economy tanking, and companies contributing less, if anything at all, to their retirement accounts. Added to that, the stock market , which supports most retirement accounts, took a big tumble. The bottom fell out of thenNet worth of everything – companies and individuals.
Even the savviest investor could not prevent what happened in those years, short of taking his money out of the financial markets ahead of time. Any investor who withdraws completely is probably not that savvy. Savvy investors take the ups and downs of the market as an expectation, though no one expected what happened in those years.
So the question becomes not whom to blame for the mess. There’s plenty of blame to be spread around among Wall Street, government and, yes, individual decisions. But blaming wastes energy that should be focused on recovery.
We all have had to rethink retirement. Some of us have told ourselves we have to work until we die. Some of those folks may have other alternatives, but they are not seeing them.
Certainly, some of us have said we have to work past the age we thought we were going to retire. That’s fine if you are in good health personally. But don’t think for a minute that your job will be there for as long as you want it. Companies reorganize drastically and often. The younger generation of workers, when they retire, may brag about how many reorgs they survived, just as the older generation is thankful for the steady work they had.
Speaking of young people, they may want to think twice about ASSUMING they will survive every reorg. It’s great to believe, or even be told, how good you are at what you do and how your employer cannot possibly live without you.
But, you can’t always see into the future. The world changes quickly. Companies are constantly looking at ways to work more efficiently. Lots of good people have lost jobs they expected to have for as long as they wanted to work.
How do we avoid the instinct to cast blame and rethink retirement? First, work on you. Make sure you have a good and optimistic attitude. Remember, those who innovate are usually optimists. It’s tough to see the future properly without believing that all, eventually, will be good.
Secondly, think about the things you DON’T like to do – things that make you “uncomfortable,” or so you believe. Give them a try. Then, try them again, and again etc. This will take you out of your comfort zone, where you may have to go, eventually, to survive.
Thirdly, don’t be afraid to look at something different. The people who lament that they thought they were all set, are many of the same people who tell themselves, “oh, I couldn’t possibly do THAT!”
There are many ways to fight this. For one of the best, visit If you leave your comfort zone to look at something new, you may lose the instinct to cast blame for your troubles, and find a way out.
This may not be your dad’s way to retire, but the world has changed. We need to be part of our own solutions, rather than focusing on how we got into trouble.
Think of it this way: the federal government bails out some companies because innocent people would get hurt if they didn’t. But they won’t bail you out as an individual if you get hurt. You have to bail yourself out. You might not only bail yourself out, but prosper in many ways in the process.