What to Do During a Market Decline
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When times are turbulent, it is hard to know what to do during a market decline.
I will give you 4 tips to help you stay on track.
We came out of the March 2020 COVID crash with a roaring stock and housing market. But what is coming next?
I’m the recipient of many an email trying to sum up current conditions and or give me an idea of the market or economy’s next steps.
There are even some who try to be diplomatic and lay out opposing ideas to be more fair (and probably more accurate, since it’s unlikely both sides will be right).
I don’t know about you but advice is coming at you from all sides and it is hard to know what to do. But here are some things I want you to consider.
Here are a few tips to help you know what to do in a market decline.
Think about the purpose of this money. Is it for retirement in the future? Or could it be for college in the near term? What about a down payment on a home? What about saving for a vacation? Depending on how you plan to spend that money and when will guide on how to put your portfolio together. There are many websites to help understand what a globally diversified portfolio looks like. You may wish to speak to a fiduciary financial advisor to get some help as well. You and your actions are what most influences long-term investment success. Your behavior is the biggest determinant of success. Give that portfolio you gave so much love and attention to while putting it together so carefully, some time to mature and grow. If you give up too soon you will not see the benefit.
Personally, I’ve been saving and investing for only about 22 years, less than half my lifetime. But I’ve always been adding to my nest egg, keeping it invested in a globally diversified portfolio. Some years suck, but then some years, you can’t even begin to believe the kind of growth you’ll experience. The combination of your investments compounding over time and adding dollars to your investments is a powerful wealth-building technique.
Don’t lose heart because of declines and volatility. And don’t allow fear to drive your decisions. It does take discipline and like any other type of activity that requires commitment, time and discipline, you will have a much better outcome than those who quit.
Keep in mind that over time, markets go up. Employees continue to go to work, be productive and help companies grow, even in bad times. But they don’t go up in a straight line. Just like your own life, there are ups and downs. And if you think that your “gut” is telling you something that you just have to act on, push that thought aside and stick to your plan.
Without a roadmap for why you are doing something, you can lose conviction and during bad times, let fear take control. Get clear on your short and long-term goals, even going as far as writing them down. Talk with your trusted friend, spouse or advisor about these goals and be specific, dedicating a date by which you plan to achieve it.
If you have given some thought to the prior 3 tips, then allow the calm to wash over you. Work on the things in your life that you do have control over like your spending, savings, and debt. Review your investment allocation periodically but not so frequently that you start to let fear creep up and overtake the calm. And know that like the seasons, winter will pass, and spring will come around once again bringing with it warm air, a yardful of color and a renewed sense of well-being.
I recommend talking to a fiduciary financial professional to see if they can help you achieve your goals better than you could on your own and help you know what to do during a market decline.
These are my tips for knowing what to do during a market decline. I hope they can help. Please contact me if you would like to talk about how I help people with the financial side of their lives.
Angie Furubotten-LaRosee, Certified Financial Planner™, speaker, podcaster, and founder of Avea Financial Planning, a fee-only, fiduciary financial advice and investment management firm for women in STEM and education. www.Aveafp.com
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My website. My most recent Financial Side of Life podcast.
Angie founded Avea Financial Planning and is a fee-only advisor helping people retiring in 1-2 years, particularly PNNL employees, with tax-smart retirement planning, investments & fiduciary financial advice so they can be more confident and live life on their own terms.