To Avoid the Biggest Investing Mistake, Stay Strong

IF you have been awake for the last five years, your investing experience has probably been anything but smooth. Scary markets like the one that bottomed out in March 2009 often cause us to do crazy things. This craziness may be temporary, but it doesn’t take long to make what I call the big mistake: ditching your well-designed investing plan to either buy high or sell low. Believe me, I understand. After watching the markets for a long time, I think the market of 2008-9 was the scariest one I have lived through. A lot of us were so scared we went looking for alternatives to our disciplined investing strategy — and in hindsight, that was a terrible mistake. Hindsight is the crucial word in the previous sentence. If you bailed on your investing plan in early 2009, by now it has become painfully obvious that it was a bad idea. By almost any measure, the market has more than doubled since those dark days. More in the New York Times here.

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