If you're going to sail into retirement with a nice fat portfolio and big sacks of money strewn across your deck, then you're going to have to deal with some ups and downs along the way. Financial markets are volatile by nature, and how you respond to these critical, anxiety-inducing periods can make the difference between a meager retirement, and a life of luxury.
Article Category: Psychology
Keeping our long-term goals in mind at all times requires an immense amount of effort. That's why we're often sidetracked by short-term wants and needs. Automating certain parts of the investment process is akin to putting guardrails around your financial ability to misbehave ... it'll keep you out of trouble and ensure you stay on track for long-term success.
Investing is very much a mental game. It requires an intellectual toughness and fortitude that is not only uncommon, but very difficult to develop. In this article we discuss the mental resilience that investors need to cultivate in order to stomach the fluctuations that come with being a successful investor.
Every year, top Wall Street analysts put their thinking caps on and try to forecast the upcoming year's market return. The result of their analysis usually comes in the form of "price targets" which indicate where major indexes such as the S&P 500 are likely to be at year end. While price targets have little value themselves, what is valuable to investors is having a framework in which to view future returns.
Evidence from numerous studies on behavioral finance suggests that the need for emotional comfort costs the average investor around 2-3% per year in foregone investment return. This shortfall, commonly referred to as the "behavior gap," stems from the fact that optimal long-term financial decisions are often very uncomfortable to live with in the short-term.