Doesn’t everyone love a sale?  It seems that we all love to get a discount except when it comes to the stock market.  The Bay has a big sale every fall and people come from all over to get their bargains.  Why should it be any different when it comes to the stock market?
Is the selloff in the markets really any different than all the other previous ones we have gone through?  During the 2008-09 selloff we saw an exceptional downturn in the markets.  Looking back wouldn’t it have been nice to get some extra money in some of your favourite companies at rock bottom prices before the last decade of increases?Isn’t saving money what everyone wants?  If this is the case then why do we get so depressed or upset when the market periodically gives us opportunity to purchase stocks at better pricing?
I believe what may be happening is with technology comes the ability to look at our investment statements on a daily basis and any high water mark our investments have been valued at we believe is ours.  Anything below that amount we feel we are suffering a loss.
There will always be up markets just as there will be down markets.  In between those two is the up and down we are experiencing right now.  This is not different.  It will never be different.  What needs to change is our obsession with looking at our accounts on a daily basis and getting emotional.  Trust me this won’t be easy but it will be worth trying to break a habit that have us stressed on a daily basis.
If you are a trader this advice is not for you.  Traders do need to pay attention practically minute by minute.  Most of us are investing in quality investments for the long term.  We get the break of not needing to check the markets daily unless we are trying to buy more bargains.
Since we know that it is impossible to time the markets on a regular basis we need to just stay the course for the long term and let the markets do what they need to do.  Any short term goal, cash should be on hand so you are not selling into the down market.  Any extra cash you have should be used to take advantage of discounted pricing.  Remember what you see on your statement or online is not your valuation.  You will not know the true value of your investments until sometime in the future when you sell.  At that point we hope that it is higher than what you see today.  You understand it is not different this time.