When to hold’em… When to fold’em

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Stock market price display

By Betty Athanasakos, Financial Security Advisor

When it comes to investing, we’ve all heard the advice “buy low sell high”. We can all agree that prices are low right now, so what do we do—invest, sell or hold off?  Here are my thoughts…

Jim Rohn, author and the motivational speaker would remind us to “stand guard at the door to your mind”.  Basically, urging us to take pause and not buy into the insanity that the sky is falling.  While it is true that we have never seen times like these before, it is also true that we have lived through past health crisis that have sent the markets into a tailspin, and where the path to victory was far from clear. It is no secret that SARS, AIDS/HIV, MERS, Ebola all wreaked their own brand of havoc on the financial markets and grated the nerves of even the most experienced investors, however, the markets rebounded, and life returned to normal.

If you are already investing, keep doing what you are doing. Chances are, when you started investing you sat down with a financial advisor and put a plan in place. Now is not the time to succumb to the emotional roller-coaster and alter the plan. Investing is not only about money.  A large part of investing is about managing our emotions and not letting the madness around us dictate how we handle our investments.  

If you haven’t been investing and are looking to start, don’t attempt to do it on your own. Sorting through all the noise will be overwhelming. I suggest finding a financial advisor, who will help you complete your investor profile and put together an investment plan for you based on your goals. There is no “one size fits all” when it comes to investing. 

I’ve often been asked about leverage loans. During these times, when people are being laid off, it is not the best option. Borrowing to invest is risky and should only be entertained after honest conversation and careful consideration. With many hidden factors at play, increasing your financial burden could prove to be detrimental and perhaps, irreparable in the long run. 

All that being said, if you do have some extra money, now is a great time to take advantage of the sale prices and invest! 

In order to get the most bang for your buck set up an automated weekly investment deposit—instead of investing in one lump sum.  This way you can take advantage of dollar cost averaging as we cannot time the market.

If you are not in a financial position to start investing, take heart. Now is the perfect time to streamline your finances, get your financial house in order and prepare for the next downturn…because we know that inevitably there is always a next one!

For any questions, you may reach the author, Betty Athanasakos at betty3663@gmail.com

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