Great thinker Morgan Housel recently wrote that there are only three legal investment strategies.
1. Be smarter than others.
2. Be luckier than others.
3. Be more patient than others.
Does one of these jump out at you as being a lot more accessible than the others?
Luck falls where it may. We do not control the luck we have. Smarts? We do what we can to improve our odds. Reading, studying, analyzing, thinking…we do our best to understand what we can. But there will probably always be somebody smarter, somewhere.
The edge that anyone may choose is patience. We talk endlessly about the long view, about waiting out the downturns, about hanging in there when times seem rough. Anyone may choose patience, but it is not always easy!
After decades, we have yet to see a fool-proof indicator that will tell you which way the market is going to go in the short run. Nor have we seen evidence that any person can reliably predict the direction of the market. But we do know a couple key things:
• In the past, the broad market has tended to go up about three years out of four, and down about one year out of four.1
• Over extended periods, these ups and downs have potential gains for those who are patient.
Past performance is no guarantee of future returns, of course, so it takes some courage to exercise patience. We appreciate that in you.
Clients, if you would like to talk about this or anything else, please email us or call.
Notes & References
1. Standard & Poor’s 500 Index, S&P Dow Jones Indices. Retrieved November 26th, 2018.
The opinions voiced in this material are for general information only and are not intended to provide specific advice or recommendations for any individual.